Transcript: Hedman on winning gold, “It’s an unbelievable feeling”

Transcribed for accessibility. Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman talks about the emotions of winning his first championship as a member of Team Sweden.

Yesterday, Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman and Team Sweden won gold at the IIHF World Championship. It was Hedman’s first gold medal playing for his national team; at the IIHF World Junior Championship, Hedman won silver twice, and won bronze at the World Championship in 2010.

Hedman was named one of the team’s best three players after posting two goals and two assists in ten tournament games.

In the gold medal game, Sweden defeated Team Canada 2-1 in the shootout. Hedman scored Sweden’s only goal in regulation — the game had to go to a shootout to decide the victory. The News & Observer described Hedman’s goal as a “fluke,” but a short-handed fluke:

The breakthrough came against the odds, with Backstrom penalized for slashing, when Victor Hedman scored short-handed with 20.8 seconds left in the second period.

It was a strange goal from distance as the defenseman just lifted the puck and it somehow bounced in through Pickard's legs. The presence of Joel Lundqvist, Henrik's twin brother, may have distracted the Canadian goaltender.

"It was a fluke goal," Swedish forward Marcus Kruger said.

Hedman was interviewed by Olga Khmylev of Olga on the Ice following Team Sweden’s win.

Here is a short accessibility transcription of the interview.

Khmylev: All right, you just won gold. What’s going through your mind right now?

Hedman: I don’t know. It’s an unbelievable feeling. To represent your country and to win a tournament like this is huge. We’re really, really, really happy. Can’t explain the feelings right now. It’s pretty tough.

Khmylev: Now what was said before the overtime?

Hedman: Before overtime? Kill off the penalties to start and then go from there. Two good teams going at it. We just knew we had it in us. It had to go to a shootout, but it’s just a great feeling to come out on top.

Khmylev: How confident are you guys in your goalie? Does that make it easier to play?

Hedman: Absolutely. To have a world-class goalie like Hank [Henrik Lundqvist] always makes life easier for you. I think both goalies played unbelievable tonight. Two really good teams didn’t give up a whole lot. When things were given up, the goalies were there. I’m just so happy we pulled it out in the shootout.

Hedman’s regulation goal in yesterday’s gold medal game:

Hedman’s goal in the 3-2 victory over Team USA: