Russia’s capital celebrated its birthday this weekend, and Dynamo and Spartak were in no mood to welcome guests to the party. Neither Neftekhimik nor Slovan could manage as much as a goal in Moscow, both going down to heavy defeats.
For Spartak’s Jeff Glass, his shut-out of Slovan was the second in two games after he led his team to a 2-0 win at Atlant. This time he included a penalty shot from Mario Bliznak among his 23 saves. At the other end his team-mates took command in the second period. New arrivals Alexei Krutov, Deron Quint and Matt Anderson (2) were all on the score-sheet before Rastislav Spirko made it 5-0 late on.
Alexander Yeryomenko blanked Neftekhimik for his first shut-out of the season, while his Dynamo team-mates Leonid Komarov and Maxim Pestushko maintained their hot form. Komarov’s opener stretched his scoring streak to three games; Pestushko’s assist on Marek Kvapil’s goal put him among the points for the third game in a row. Denis Mosalyov also scored two to make it 4-0. Neftekhimik had 31 shots but couldn’t score.
Barys’ starter for 10
Barys Astana might have had to wait four days to start its KHL campaign, but the Kazakh club wasted no time in getting among the goals. In its opening game it thrashed Severstal 10-1. Despite that emphatic margin, the game was fairly tight until two quickfire goals just before halfway stretched the home side’s lead to 4-1. That was the highlight of a second period where Barys scored six times from 13 shots on goal, a performance which saw Severstal goalie Ivan Kasutin replaced at the second interval. The North American contingent led the scoring, with Nigel Dawes getting 2+2 and Brandon Bochenski scoring two more.
Shoot-out settles the ‘Green derby’
The ‘Green Giants’ of Ak Bars and Salavat Yulaev met in a reprise of last season’s Conference semi-final, and once again it was a hard-fought affair. The teams shared a 3-3 tie in Kazan before Alexander Burmistrov got the shoot-out winner for Ak Bars. That capped a good day for the summer signing from Winnipeg, who had earlier picked up his first KHL points with assists on first period goals for Tim Stapleton and Shaun Heshka. But the second period’s belonged to Salavat’s Vitaly Proshkin, with a goal and an assist as Salavat struck back. The teams remained inseparable until the end, but Salavat was unable to repeat its shoot-out success at Torpedo.
Avangard bounces back; Loko still struggles
Avangard beat Lokomotiv 5-2 in the clash of two teams with high hopes for the coming season. For the Omsk side it was a quick return to form after Friday’s disappointment at home to SKA, while for Loko the search for a first win goes on following an opening loss to Yugra. The second period was the key passage: no sooner had Loko equalized thanks to Anton But’s powerplay goal than Tomas Zaborsky reinstated Avangard’s advantage. This time the Hawks would not have their wings clipped: Alexander Perezhogin (1+1) and a first goal of the season for Sergei Kostitsyn made it 4-1 before the interval.
Around the league
SKA St. Petersburg maintained its winning start to the season with a 6-4 win at Avtomobilist. The second period proved decisive, with SKA rattling up four goals to take the game beyond Avto. The home side rallied in the final session, taking the period 3-1 to make the scoreline respectable, but there was no way back. Artemy Panarin’s 1+2 was SKA’s best return; Fyodor Malykhin had 2+1 for Avtomobilist.
Last season’s runner-up Traktor withstood a late fight back to secure its first win of the season, getting a 4-3 verdict over Torpedo. After conceding an early goal, Traktor hit back to lead 3-1 at the first interval, but it took Andrei Panov’s goal at the start of the third to see the team over the line as the home team scored twice in the closing minutes to set up a tense finale.
Metallurg Magnitogorsk had to fight hard for a 5-4 win at Vityaz after Yaroslav Kosov got the all-important goal in the 53rd minute. Earlier Vityaz had led 3-1 and 4-2 with Alexander Korolyuk scoring twice, but the team couldn’t produce a second victory to mark its return to Podolsk.
After Friday’s humbling in Zagreb, CSKA needed overtime to beat Dinamo Minsk, thanks to a goal from Georgy Misharin. Earlier Artur Gavrus had given Dinamo a second-period lead, only for Nikolai Prokhorkin to level it up early in the third.
Meanwhile, there was no repeat for Medvescak: after that 7-1 win over CSKA, the Croatian team came abruptly back down to Earth with a 1-5 reverse against Dinamo Riga. Martins Cipulis, Andris Dzerins (2), Gints Meija and Mat Robinson scored for Dinamo, Gal Koren was on target for Medvescak.
Yugra made it two from two with a 4-1 win over Atlant, which is yet to taste victory this season. Kirill Knyazev posted 1+1 for the home side; Nikita Soshnikov’s goal for Atlant on 42:11 was the first of the season for the Moscow Region outfit.
Donbass is also on two wins from two after overturning a 0-2 deficit to beat Lev in overtime. The Czechs were the last team to take to the ice this season, but showed no signs of rustiness in the early stages as they took a 2-0 lead through Calle Ridderwall and Michal Repik. Clay Wilson and Randy Robitaille tied it up, and Maxim Yakutsenya got the winner midway through overtime.