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Sweden beats Czechs 6-4, Russia edges Finland 5-4 in LG Hockey Games

NHL.com @NHL

STOCKHOLM, Sweden - Centre Rickard Wallin's line combined for six points as Sweden beat the Czech Republic 6-4 on Saturday to set up a deciding game against Nordic archrival Finland in the LG Hockey Games.

Earlier, Finland blew a 4-0 lead and lost to Russia 5-4 after a penalty shootout.

Wallin paced Sweden with two goals in front of a near-sellout crowd of 10,422 at Ericsson Globe Arena. Linemate Christian Berglund scored once and Niklas Nordgren, the other winger on Wallin's line, had three assists.

Wallin put Sweden ahead in the opening period and made it 4-2 with a short-handed goal late in the second frame, roofing a one-timer from close range.

"It was fun to contribute," said Wallin, who was named the game MVP for Sweden.

Veteran defenceman Kenny Jonsson, a two-time Olympic champion, world champion and a former National Hockey League player, Linus Omark and Johan Harju also scored for Sweden.

Harju scored into an empty net with 20 seconds left after the Czechs' late gamble of pulling the goalie for an extra skater did not pay off.

"They showed a lot of heart at the end of the game," Sweden coach Bengt-Ake Gustafsson said.

Tomas Rolinek led the Czechs with two goals. Jan Marek and Tomas Kurka also scored.

Niko Kapanen notched two goals to help Finland take a 4-0 lead against Russia in the second period. But Russia, the reigning world champion, tied it 4-4 in the third period. In the deciding penalty shootout, Alexei Michnov netted the game-winner after Finland missed three consecutive penalties.

Sweden, the defending Olympic champion, has six points and only needs one point against Finland on Sunday to win its first major tournament in two years. Finland has four points.

Russia, the two-time defending Euro Hockey Tour champion, has 2 points and the Czechs have 0.

This is the third leg of the Euro Hockey Tour. The other tournaments are in Finland, Russia and the Czech Republic.

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