William Nylander was named the Most Valuable Player at the IIHF World Championship following the gold medal game in which Sweden defeated Canada 2-1 in a shootout.
Nylander was the tournament’s co-leader in goals with seven (Nikita Gusev and Nikita Kucherov, Russia), and finished with 14 points in ten games.
The gold medal game was an epic back-and-forth affair. After a scoreless first period, Victor Hedman opened the scoring, shorthanded, on a shot from the point that was aided by multiple deflections along the ice before eluding Canadian goalie Calvin Pickard.
Canada tied the game on a power play marker from Ryan O’Reilly, assisted by Mitch Marner. The man advantage was awarded amidst some controversy as Travis Konecny clearly embellished a high stick from Elias Lindholm, sending the Swede to the penalty box.
A high tempo twenty-minute overtime was scoreless, although Nathan MacKinnon had three tremendous scoring chances including one in which he batted the puck out of mid air, just wide of the net. Alex Killorn had an opportunity to win the game for Canada with netminder Henrik Lundqvist out of position, but shot the puck over a wide-open cage.
Neither Nylander nor Marner scored for their respective teams in the shootout
Lundqvist was a perfect 4-for-4; Pickard surrendered shootout goals to Nicklas Backstrom and Oliver Ekman-Larsson.
Nylander joins his father Michael (1998) as a World Hockey Championship gold medalist.