Lokomotiv’s defeat at the hands of Dinamo Minsk finally brings to an end a run of eight consecutive regulation time wins – a new team record. Back in the first championship the Yaroslavl men put together five regulation time victories plus an overtime win, and last season they won in regulation four times in a row and also set another club record by taking at least a point from 12 straight games.
The latter record is still in danger, as Saturday’s defeat came only after a shootout, so now the Railwaymen have taken points from their last nine games. During the winning streak, the Yaroslavl side allowed only 9 goals and scored 44, and seven of the eight wins were on their own ice.
New face at Torpedo
Up to the end of January any player can move freely to another team, but Torpedo’s new forward Ruslan Bernikov, who played for just over nine minutes in the game against CSKA, deserves a special mention. Since 1997, when Ruslan began playing top level hockey, he has already moved 18 times from team to team (and has returned to several of them). Torpedo is Bernikov’s fourth team in the KHL, after spells with Neftekhimik, Vityaz and Amur. One season, Ruslan managed to wear the colors of four different teams, although he settled down slightly from 2004 to 2006, only switching clubs five times.
Hasek joins the top trio
45-year-old Spartak goalie Dominik Hasek today celebrated his fifth shutout of the current championship – the third highest total in the KHL. Top of the standings is Atlant’s 26-year-old keeper Konstantin Barulin, with 6, while 24-year-old Karri Ramo of Avangard is in second place – also on five shutouts, but he has played fewer games than Dominik. As for those among Hasek’s fellow goaltenders who are closer to his age: Alexander Vyukhin, 37, has played one perfect game, while Andrei Mezin, 36, is on two.
Figure of the day
90 minutes of penalties were amassed by Dinamo Riga’s players in the game against Atlant. It is the Latvians’ highest total of the season, but only the second highest in their history, as they once earned 120 minutes back in the first championship.
Andrei Mezin (Dinamo Minsk). Not only did he save 32 shots out of 33, but he was also unbeaten in the shootout, allowing his team to take two points from a clash with the Western Conference leaders.
Denis Denisov (SKA). Made two assists and earned a rating of +2.
Denis Grebeshkov (SKA). Scored a goal and finished at a +2.
Fedor Fedorov (Atlant). Spent nearly 19 minutes on the ice, in which time he picked up two points, with a goal and an assist, and tested the goalie with 8 shots – a personal best.
Brock Trotter (Dinamo Riga). Took part in all his team’s goals, scoring one and helping to create two more.
Charles Linglet (Torpedo). Scored one goal, supplied the pass for another, and merited a +1 – the highest rating of any forward on his team.
Quotes of the day
“Unfortunately, in the third period the officials’ decisions affected the game,” CSKA head coach Sergei Nemchinov.
“In overtime we tried to use as many different players as we could, because we still have four games to go in this spell of playing every other day, and we must always keep that in mind,” Dinamo Minsk head coach Marek Sykora.
“It turned out to be an interesting game today, but we made a few mistakes in our tactics and in the end that cost us the game,” Dinamo Riga head coach Julius Supler.
Alexei Shevchenko, special to khl.ru