Offense is the best defense
Dinamo Riga is still the League’s most dangerous team while outnumbered. Instead of just sitting back in defense, Julius Supler’s men have struck six goals this season while short-handed. To cap it all, the latest from Alexanders Nizivijs was the game-winner.
Yaroslavl forward Andrei Kiryuhin also scored while his team was killing a penalty. It was Lokomotiv’s fourth such goal of the campaign, and with three other teams they share third place in the list of the most deadly while outnumbered.
Both Riga’s and Lokomotiv’s victims have a history of throwing away a numerical advantage. CSKA has allowed three goals already in power play, and Severstal has conceded four – the worst record of the current season.
Lethal in overtime
No-one should be surprised by Traktor’s overtime victory against Ak Bars. The men from Chelyabinsk are the best in the KHL for winning in the added five minutes, having notched up 6 overtime successes already, with no ties and just the one defeat at the hands of Atlant.
Traktor needed just 47 seconds to kill off Ak Bars – the fastest two points for Valeri Belousov’s team this season, and the sixth fastest overtime win in the entire league. The championship record belongs to Avtomobilist, who struck the killer blow against Severstal just 25 seconds into overtime.
Not paying the penalty
The trend for missing penalty shots in regulation time continues. Out of 30 awarded in the current championship, only six have been converted. Today, Cherepovets goalie Rastislav Stana got the better of first Alexander Korolyuk and then Jori Lehtera of Lokomotiv.
It is already the third game this season to feature two penalty shots. Like today, on both previous occasions the shots were awarded to the one side, and all of them were missed. First Traktor spurned two chances against Ak Bars, and then Avtomobilist slipped up in similar fashion against Yugra.
Figure of the day
3 players in the SKA vs Spartak clash scored doubles: Evgeny Fedorov, Alexei Yashin and Mattias Weinhandl. The fastest belonged to Fedorov, whose goals came just 6 minutes and 55 seconds apart.
Dimitrij Kotschnew (Lokomotiv). Saved 32 shots to claim his third shutout of the championship.
Yakov Rylov (CSKA). Spent over 24 minutes on the ice and made three assists.
Ilya Gorokhov (Atlant). Scored two goals, both of them in power play.
Andrei Kiryuhin (Lokomotiv). Struck the only goal of the game, and scored it while short-handed.
Evgeny Fedorov (Spartak). Scored a double to help his side to take two points in Saint Petersburg.
Alexanders Nizivijs (Dinamo Riga). Not only scored a short-handed game-winner, but also conjured up a superb pass for Tomas Surovy. Earned a rating of +2.
Quotes of the day
“Clearly, we were terrible in the first period, just terrible. It was as if we were still warming up,” SKA head coach Vaclav Sykora.
“There were a lot of penalties. I switched to playing with three lines and five defensemen at the end. And so our opponents filled their boots,” Spartak head coach Igor Pavlov.
“We couldn’t come up with any smart power play. Overall, we did nothing in attack – hence the dismal result,” Ak Bars head coach Zinetula Bilyaletdinov.
“It was already our second game we played with only three lines, which has to affect our game. I believe we really deserved this victory,” Atlant head coach Milos Riha.
Alexei Shevchenko, special to khl.ru