VANCOUVER, BC - FEBRUARY 17: Alexander Sulzer of Germany battles Peter Forsberg of Sweden for the puck in the first period during the ice hockey men's preliminary game on day 6 of the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics at Canada Hockey Place on February 17, 2010 in Vancouver, Canada. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Men's Hockey: Sweden Shuts Out Germany, 2-0, In Group C Preliminary Match

Despite playing relatively poorly, Sweden was able to squeak out a 2-0 victory over Germany in a Group C Preliminary game at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics.

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Sweden Plays Sloppy, Still Squeaks By Germany, 2-0

It wasn't pretty, that's for sure.

Despite facing off against a far inferior German team, Sweden was able to hold on for a 2-0 victory in a Group C preliminary contest on Wednesday night in Vancouver. It was the first game of the Olympic tournament for both teams.

This game really shouldn't have been as close as it was. The Swedes did control most of the game, keeping the puck in the German zone for the majority of the time. Because of this, they forced Germany into taking penalties and losing any momentum they could even hope to build. At the same time, while they were able to control the play, they didn't take over the game.

Germany came dangerously close in the shot totals, which Sweden held a slim 25-21 advantage in for the game. They were all over the Swedes defensively from start to finish and Thomas Greiss played a pretty darn good game in goal. Germany didn't really have a shot in this game for one reason, though. They simply do not have the talent to be able to finish off the scoring chances that they do generate for themselves.

Against a better team -- the Canadians, the Finns, the Russians or even the Americans -- Sweden isn't going to be so lucky. They'll be able to use Friday's game versus Belarus as another tune-up before taking on arch rival Finland on Sunday.

As for Germany, they'll take on Finland on Friday and wrap up the preliminary round against Belarus on Saturday night.

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Sweden Takes 2-0 Lead On Goal By Loui Eriksson

The Swedes have opened up the game a little bit, separating themselves from Germany on a goal by Loui Eriksson to give them a 2-0 lead at the 14:13 mark of the second period.

Nicklas Backstrom really made the whole play happen. He danced away from his defender in the corner and when another German committed to him, he played the puck to a wide open Eriksson near the goal mouth. Eriksson easily put it past Thomas Greiss.

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