Three Crowns For Tre Kronor’s Jonsson, Loob, Naslund

Left to right : HAKAN LOOB, MATS NASLUND and TOMAS JONSSON for Tre Kronor at the 1994 Winter Olympic Games in Lillehammer, Norway.

Left to right : HAKAN LOOB, MATS NASLUND and TOMAS JONSSON for Tre Kronor at the 1994 Winter Olympic Games in Lillehammer, Norway.

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If the shootout in the Gold Medal Match at the 1994 Winter Games in Lillehammer, Norway, did not break enough new ground for an Olympic tournament, the result certainly left three Swedish players in uncharted territory for the history of all ice hockey.

Sweden’s triumph over Canada courtesy PETER FORSBERG’s spectacular one-handed goal gave Tre Kronor its first-ever Olympic gold medal and completed an extraordinary as well as unprecedented trio of titles for three Swedish players.

Aging veterans TOMAS JONSSON, HAKAN LOOB and MATS NASLUND became the first men to ever capture a Stanley Cup championship, an International Ice Hockey Federation World Championships title and an Olympic gold medal over the course of a playing career.

Jonsson, who had made his Olympic debut for Sweden at the 1980 Lake Placid Games as a 19-year-old, became with the New York Islanders just the third European-trained player (joining teammates ANDERS KALLUR and STEFAN PERSSON) to lift the cherished Stanley Cup. The diminutive defenseman later garnered a gold medal at the 1991 IIHF World Championships.

Loob became the first Swedish player to score 50 goals for a single National Hockey League season in 1988 with the Calgary Flames and hoisted the Cup one season later. A year prior to his record-setting season with Calgary, Loob led Tre Kronor with five goals at the IIHF World Championships as Sweden took the title in Vienna. Loob later added another gold medal from the 1991 IIHF WC.

Naslund, who netted a bronze medal with Jonsson for Sweden at the 1980 Lake Placid Games, was a member of the Montreal Canadiens’ 1986 Stanley Cup-winning side. Two seasons later, Naslund became the first Swede to secure a major individual NHL award with his selection for the Lady Byng Trophy. Later, after leaving Montreal to sign with HC Lugano in Switzerland for the 1990-91 season, the Little Viking was victorious at the 1991 IIHF World Championships with Tre Kronor.

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NOTE — Hakan Loob and Mats Naslund each took turns for Sweden in the penalty-shot shootout phase of the Gold Medal Match versus Canada at Lillehammer. Both failed with their attempts, however.

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