Both Salavat Yulaev Ufa and Atlant Moscow Region parted company with their head coaches on Thursday - and both teams recorded wins on Friday. Salavat Yulaev thrashed high-flying Traktor Chelyabinsk 4-0, while Atlant edged out Metallurg Magnitogorsk 3-2.
In Ufa it took a late surge to see off a resilient Traktor side, even after Alexander Radulov gave the hosts a 1-0 lead on 30:21. The game was still in doubt until the final minutes, but two goals from Alexander Svitov and another from Maxim Sushinsky saw Vener Safin enjoy a successful debut as acting head coach.
It was the exact opposite for Atlant, though, who raced into a 3-0 lead by 5:37 thank to Ilya Kablukov, Eduard Levandowski and Branko Radivojevic. But just when acting head coach Janne Karlsson might have been thinking he had an easy job, Metallurg began to fight back. Enver Lisin pulled one back midway through the second period, and Denis Khlystov set home nerves jangling in earnest when he made it 3-2 on 57:56, but Atlant closed out a narrow win.
Kalinin starts, Kalinin finishes
Defenseman Dmitry Kalinin was the star man for SKA St. Petersburg as the team went top of the table with an overtime win at home to Yugra Khanty-Mansiysk. He opened the scoring on 37 seconds, and finally sealed his side's success on 61:56 after a 4-4 tie. Petr Pruha, Gleb Klimenko and Fyodor Fedorov were the other SKA scorers. Linus Videll, Evgeny Blokhin and Anton Krysanov all posted 1+1 for Yugra.
CSKA came from behind to take the honors in a Moscow derby with Spartak, played in front of a near sell-out crowd. Oleg Gubin put the hosts in front, but the Army Men hit back with Dmitry Monya and Alexander Guskov to win 2-1.
Cat fight in Kazan
The league’s rival "snow leopards", Ak Bars Kazan and Barys Astana, went head to head - and the Kazakh team won out 3-2. Vadim Krasnoslobodtsev settled the issue with a penalty shot on 59:31 after he was fouled by Stepan Zakharchuk. Goaltender Jeff Glass made 36 saves to help Barys to victory.
Around the league
Neftekhimik Nizhnekamsk ended a tough week on a high note with a 3-2 win over Avtomobilist. Alexei Krutov scored twice for the visitors, but Denis Arkhipov hit the game winning goal for Neftekhimik.
In Poprad, Lev finally put an end to Vityaz’ sequence of five wins in a row. Vaclav Nedorost was the hero, as his hat-trick helped Slovakian side to a rare victory.
Two goals from Roman Cervenka gave Avangard an away win in Riga, though it was pretty even for almost two and a half periods. But in the last 12 minutes Czech in-form striker made it comfortable for the Omsk Region team.