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Klingberg opens eyes in Swedish win

Thursday, 08.05.2010 / 7:12 PM / News

By Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

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Klingberg opens eyes in Swedish win
Carl Klingberg, the Atlanta Thrashers' 2009 second-round draft selection, scored twice to help Sweden to a 6-2 victory over Finland Wednesday in an exhibition game being played as part of USA Hockey's National Junior Evaluation Camp.
LAKE PLACID, N.Y. -- Carl Klingberg had to sit and watch Sweden's first two games, but he certainly made an impact when he got into the lineup.

The Atlanta Thrashers' 2009 second-round draft selection scored a pair of goals to help Sweden to a 6-2 victory over Finland Wednesday in an exhibition game being played as part of USA Hockey's National Junior Evaluation Camp. Magnus Paajarvi-Svensson had a pair of assists, Sebastian Wannstrom scored on a penalty shot and Sweden captain Anton Lander and William Wallen also had goals.

Goalie Fredrik Pettersson-Wentzel continued his strong play from Tuesday's game against the U.S., making 13 saves on 15 shots. Joonas Donskoi and Iiro Pakarinen scored for Finland. Goalie Jonathan Iilahti stopped 30 of 36 shots.

Klingberg sat out the first two games with a sore left foot suffered when he blocked a shot during practice. Against the Finns, Klingberg was responsible for three of the shots Iilahti couldn't stop, either by shooting the puck past him or by turning into a 6-foot-3, 205-pound blue-clad eclipse.

"He really defined how a forward should work in front of the net," Sweden coach Roger Ronnberg told NHL.com. "He's eager to be there. He's showing that he has the attitude to be in front of the net and it makes for a very good game."

Klingberg is smart enough to know that getting in front of the net is where he has to go to be successful.

"That's how I play," he told NHL.com. "That's what I bring to every team I play for, especially this one."

Atlanta Thrashers Director of Amateur Scouting and Player Development Dan Marr was one of the most interested observers. He had been waiting to see Klingberg in action, and was very pleased by what he saw.

"He played his game today," Marr told NHL.com. "You can see it's more the North American style. He's got that physical component and he likes to battle -- battle for position, battle for the puck. He goes to the net."

Usually it works well, like on his two goals. After Wannstrom scored on a penalty shot midway through the first and Lander added an even-strength goal at 12:41, Klingberg converted a Paajarvi-Svensson pass from in close at 15:41.

Then, 2:06 into the second, he pushed Sweden's lead to 4-0 when he banged in an Oscar Lindberg pass.

Donskoi scored from the side of the net to make it 4-1 at 11:03 of the second, and then Pakarinen fired a rocket from the left side that got past Pettersson-Wentzel at 4:26 of the third, during a five-on-three power play.

Just over two minutes later, however, Klingberg blotted out Iilahti, who never saw Adam Almqvist's shot or Jarnkrok's re-direction of the puck until it was behind him.

Wallen converted a Gabriel Landeskog pass for a power-play goal at 8:18 to close the scoring.

Finland had more chances to score in the third, as Sweden was whistled for five penalties, including three straight in the first 3:48 of the period, but their only goal came on the two-man advantage.

Sweden will come back Thursday to face the U.S. in a rematch of Tuesday's game that saw the U.S. score four times in the first 4:05 of the game and cruise to a 6-3 victory.

Contact Adam Kimelman at akimelman@nhl.com




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