Despite losing their captain, Henrik Zetterberg, and one of their best players, Henrik Sedin, the Swedes have clinched the top spot in Group C. Their victories came in the form of a convincing win in the opener versus Czech Republic, and a tight checking affair against the plucky Swiss, which took a late goal from Daniel Alfredsson to decide.
The Latvians on the other hand were defeated in both their games. They lost with 8 seconds on the clock versus Switzerland, and then went on to suffer defeat at the hands of the Czechs by a score of 4-2.
Sweden holds the edge in talent, play making, forwards, defence, goaltending...well, everything really. However Ted Nolan has preached short shifts and constant effort to the Latvian underdogs, and has managed to get an honest effort from a roster that is void of any type of high end hockey talent.
Don't expect Sweden to take it lightly on the Latvians, as goal differentials effect the playoff seeding in the Olympics.