Result of the day
Barys - Spartak 9-3. The team from Astana have proved to be another of the current championship’s surprise packages. Andrei Shayanov’s team play in good and bad spells, experiencing both winning runs and losing streaks. On one occasion they even managed to rout Metallurg Magnitogorsk, while their opponents were on the ascent, 7-1.

So what do Barys have in their armor? A well-balanced roster. In the encounter with Spartak only four of their players, excluding the goalie, had still not collected points for goals or assists. Of course the team has its stars, for example Maxim Spiridonov or Jozef Stumpel, but they are not over-reliant on them. Keep Spiridonov quiet and Konstantin Glazachev will spring to life. Or Ilya Solarev, or David Nemirovsky. Plus there is Kevin Dallman, one of the highest-scoring defensemen in the League. The Kazakhstan club’s keepers have their off days, but can any club at the moment boast a solid pair of goaltenders? On the whole, one really does not envy the team who will have to face Barys in the play-offs.

We have discussed Spartak on numerous occasions. The guys have accomplished their mission for the regular season, see no sense in trying to choose their play-off opponent, and so they are using the remaining games as rehearsals. And if the brawls involving Jaroslav Obsut and Branko Radivojevic are anything to go by, it seems they are having fun as well.

Spartak slain
For the Red-and-Whites, it is the heaviest defeat of their KHL history. They had never before lost by more than a five-goal margin, and had never conceded nine in an away match. For Barys, the victory merely equaled the club record, as the winning margin was also six goals when they recently hammered Metallurg Magnitogorsk.

Empty net
Traktor moved ‘up’ to third place in the League for total goals conceded into an unguarded net. It is the sixth time for the Urals club that the coach was made to regret pulling the goalie. The leaders by a comfortable margin on this score are still Dinamo Minsk, with 9 such goals already. As for Amur, it is the fourth time they have scored into an empty net.

Loko match their record
Lokomotiv failed to score for the second time this season, equaling their total for the previous championship. The only club to score in every game in their KHL history is Salavat Yulaev, although Spartak have managed a goal in every game this season.

End of the series
Petersburg’s Army Men have come to the end of their record-breaking run of eight consecutive wins in regulation time. In this spell they conceded only 11 goals, and hit 28 in reply.

Lapse of concentration
It seems Dynamo Moscow are trying their hardest to break their own unwanted record. This season they have already surrendered a 3-0 lead for the only time in their entire history in all Russian championships, and today was the third time this season they have thrown away a 2-0 advantage. Four other clubs have the same statistic, and things are only worse at Traktor.

In contrast, Dinamo Riga continue to demonstrate the triumph of the will: not content with already having won despite 0-3 deficit, today they fought back from 0-4 down to claim victory.

First victory
Dinamo Riga have their first overtime win of the season. The team has played the extra five minutes on nine occasions, with five of these continuing to the shoot-out and three ending in defeat. For Atlant it was only their second overtime defeat of the current campaign, despite 14 of their matches going to added time.

No safety in numbers
Sibir forward Dmitry Tarasov has now four short-handed goals to his name this season. Incidentally, Dmitry can boast a unique achievement, having once scored two such goals in one game. The record for the KHL still belongs to Alexei Tereshchenko, with 6 goals in a season.

Overtaking Esche, and chasing Esche
Metallurg Magnitogorsk goaltender Vasily Koshechkin has overtaken SKA’s Robert Esche’s total of clean sheets this season. His game against the other Metallurg, from Novokuznetsk, was the seventh in which he has stayed unbeaten, and moves him closer to the record for KHL championships - nine perfect games. And this belongs to Esche.

Figures of the day
50 shots at the Dynamo Moscow goal from the Severstal players.

7 shots at the HC MVD goal by Avangard defenseman Anton Babchuk.

26 minutes 8 seconds spent in play by Traktor defenseman Alexander Sazonov.

87.5% of 16 face-offs won by Amur attacker Aleksejs Sirokovs.

Key players
Alexei Murygin (Amur). Saved all 26 shots in the game against Traktor.

Sergei Gimayev (Barys). Made one assist, finished with an efficiency rating of +3.

Sandis Ozolins (Dinamo Riga). Made two assists, finished with a rating of +4.

Mika Hannula (Salavat Yulaev). Scored two points in a game for the second time in a row, this time claiming a goal and an assist.

Timofey Shishkanov (Avangard). Was part of both his team’s scoring moves, and in one of them supplied the finishing touch.

Jeff Platt (Dinamo Minsk). Scored the two goals, one of them short-handed, that brought his team victory.

Quotes
“Yesterday we held a team meeting, and it wasn’t a friendly one,” - Sibir head coach Andrei Tarasenko.

“I suppose it being -35 outside had an effect. We froze a little,” - Traktor head coach Andrei Nazarov.

“This was the weakest display in all my time at Spartak,” - Spartak Moscow head coach Milos Riha.

“In the second period we slept through all three goals,” - Lokomotiv head coach Kari Heikkila.

Alexei Shevchenko, khl.ru

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