Play of the day
Ak Bars Kazan talismanic captain Alexei Morozov became the first player in Russian history to score four goals in one period, as the defending champions defeated Sibir 7-4 in Novosibirsk.
It took him one second over 18 minutes to send the puck four times in Sibir’s net. Two blasting shots from distance on 41:42 and 44:14 proved to be too much for Tomas Lawson, resulting in goaltender’s substitution. But this change has made no impact on Alex, and on 47:33 Alexander Fomichev was skillfully beaten in a close fight. And the net was empty on 59:43 when Morozov scored his fourth from the half-line.
The guy is a genius, isn’t he? It seemed he’s never put his skate on ice in first two periods. The hosts probably were fooled by his idleness and forgot about him completely. But he needs no time to wake up – just give him the puck and consider it done.
You still think that the NHL’s got all the world’s best players? Why don’t you come to Kazan to watch Morozov in action? Or it could be Novosibirsk the other day. Anyway, try to catch him and you’ll never regret – in case do catch him, of course.
Match of the day
Traktor Chelyabinsk 1
Lokomotiv Yaroslavl 6
At some stage of the season Traktor could be considered the most entertaining team in the league. The side with no stars in the roster was able to steal some points from any opponent. But now it seems to be running out of steam and dropping down the table. All the recent games unfolded by the same scenario: brisk opening, lots of penalties, shorthanded goals… and no points in the end. This time to make things even worse they were handed their heaviest home defeat since returning to the top flight in 2006-07.
Andrei Nazarov’s side is still hanging in the playoffs zone, but by a single point now. Lada Togliatti, looking to overcome financial problems, seems quite capable of playing the catch-me-if-you-can game. Amur Khabarovsk and Sibir Novosibirsk, both with new head coaches, are not too far away either, and even Avtomobilist Yekaterinburg shouldn’t be written-off as yet.
All previous clashes between Metallurg Novokuznetsk and Lada Togliatti in the KHL have finished with the same scoreline. Thursday it was 3-1 to Metallurg yet again. More than that, even the scenario is always pretty much the same, with Metallurg scoring first, then going further, and Lada launching late and unsuccessful chase.
Another outcome could be predicted just after the final siren - HC MVD were doomed to lose to Avtomobilist in Yekaterinburg after 2-2 draw at the end of three periods. Never has Moscow Region side won in overtime or shootouts this season. Avto, on the other hand, have yet to lose a shootout series. So, it had to be 3-2 to Avto, hadn’t it?
Goalies going tougher
The number of goaltenders involved in brawls and heavily penalized for that grows constantly. Now Avtomobilist’s Ivan Lisutin has lost his nerve – he’s on 25 PIM this season, tied for third place with Martin Gerber of Atlant, behind Lokomotiv’s Georgy Gelashvili, 52, and Robert Esche of SKA, 39.
Lokomotiv had 44 shots on Traktor’s goal. Sergei Konkov scored twice finishing the game at a +2.
Ak Bars’ captain Alexei Morozov had 8 shots on Sibir’s goal, scoring four times.
HC MVD defenseman Martin Strbak spent 26 min 31 sec on ice.
Sibir’s forward Denis Kartsev won 72 per cent of his 25 face-offs.
Metallurg Magnitogorsk forward Stanislav Chistov scored twice adding more than one point to his tally in third game in a row.
Amur’s goalie Tyler Moss saved 33 shots
There were 83 PIM in total in Avtomobilist v HC MVD game.
Quote of the day
«There is nothing I can say, just apologize,» Traktor’s head coach Andrei Nazarov.
Alexei Shevchenko, khl.ru