After a 3-2 win in Omsk, Dynamo Moscow head coach Oleg Znarok sounded a warning to Avangard - the Gagarin Cup final is far from over.
“When we were losing 1-3 in the play-offs I told the guys that for us the competition was just beginning,” Znarok told journalists in the post-game press conference. “And now, we are waiting for Omsk to come back to Moscow. We still believe we can save everything. The guys showed their courage and character.”
Although Dynamo’s roster suggested a few reshuffles in the lines, the Blue-and-Whites took to the ice with broadly similar quintets to the previous games. “We wanted to mess with their heads,” Znarok smiled. But he added that there had been tactical amendments, although he was unwilling to elaborate while the series was underway.
Raimo Summanen’s appearance at the post-game press gathering was delayed by an impromptu meeting with Omsk Region’s governor, Sports.ru reported. The Finnish coach preferred not to elaborate on the discussions with the official, but instead focused on his team’s injury worries ahead of Monday’s game in Moscow. He told reporters that the team doctor had not allowed defenseman Anton Belov to return to action, while Sergei Kalinin’s problem “could be something serious”. Both players were hurt during the second period of Dynamo’s 3-2 in game five of the series on Saturday afternoon.