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Back to work, as Sweden prepares for U.S.

Thursday, 08.09.2012 / 10:42 AM

By Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor / USA Hockey National Junior Evaluation Camp blog

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USA Hockey National Junior Evaluation Camp blog
Back to work, as Sweden prepares for U.S.

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. -- The Sweden players and staff spent Wednesday enjoying the picturesque scenery here in Lake Placid.

But Thursday morning it was time to get back to work, as the team had a game against the U.S. Thursday afternoon to get ready for.

Sweden coach Roger Ronnberg said the biggest thing he's looking for is a better start to the game. His team routed Finland 8-2 on Tuesday, but Ronnberg said he wasn't happy with his team's effort in the opening 20 minutes.

"I think we were playing sloppy," Ronnberg told NHL.com. "We weren't focused, we weren't ready to work hard enough. We allowed the Finns to outplay us, and that's not the way we would have liked it."

Of the 22 players Sweden brought here, Ronnberg said 10-15 will make the team that goes to Russia for the 2013 World Junior Championship. Among the group here is Mika Zibanejad, who scored the overtime goal that won the gold medal.

Ronnberg, though, isn't sure he'll have Zibanejad for a repeat attempt at the gold. Taken with the sixth pick of the 2011 draft by the Ottawa Senators, Zibanejad started last season in the NHL before being returned to Djurgardens in the Swedish Elite League after nine games with the Senators.

"We are not counting on Mika for the World Juniors," Ronnberg said, "but if he's available I'm more than pleased [to have him]."

Ronnberg also said St. Louis Blues prospect Niklas Lundstrom will start in goal while Oscar Dansk rests a minor knee injury. Dansk was hurt in Tuesday's 8-2 win against Finland.

Contact Adam Kimelman at akimelman@nhl.com. Follow him on Twitter: @NHLAdamK

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