The KHL is determined to look after its members through the current financial crisis – just ask the players and fans of Lada Togliatti.

The club from the Volga region has a proud history – in 1994 it became the first provincial club to break Dynamo Moscow’s stranglehold on the league championship in post-Soviet era – but as the recession took its toll on Russia’s auto-industry their tie-up with the city’s car plant hit the skids.

Before the season began KHL President Alexander Medvedev confirmed that Lada, and Vityaz Chekhov, another cash-strapped outfit, would be supported by the league to enable them to compete this season.

And of the eve of the two team’s clash in Togliatti – which Vityaz eventually won 6-5 after a shootout – a threatened strike by Lada’s players was averted by news that Rostekhnologii would pay the club’s bills from November.

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