SKA St. Petersburg handed a debut to netminder Sergei Bobrovsky – and were rewarded with two assists from the goalie in a 5-2 win over Ak Bars Kazan. After a hard-fought first period, SKA took command in the second session with four unanswered goals, including two for Vladimir Tarasenko, to go 5-1 up. Janne Pesonen pulled one back in the final stanza, but there was no way back for Ak Bars.
CSKA wins in Magnitka shoot-out
Igor Radulov’s penalty shot gave CSKA the edge following a 1-1 tie at Metallurg Magnitogorsk. In a game which brought the likes of Evgeny Malkin and Pavel Datsyuk head-to-head, it was CSKA which seized the early initiative when Vladimir Zharkov opened the scoring after just 92 seconds. Nikolai Kulemin leveled matters in the second, and not even a spell of 3v3 overtime could produce a winner before the shoot-out. CSKA coach Valery Bragin swapped goalies, replacing Rastislav Stana with penalty expert Ilya Proskuryakov, and was rewarded with two saves to deny star forwards Malkin and Sergei Mozyakin.
Ovi earns ovation
Alexander Ovechkin got his second goal since returning to Dynamo, and weighed in with a further assist in his team’s 5-1 thrashing of Neftekhimik Nizhnekamsk. Ovi helped set up Dominik Granak for the game-winner on 15:43, and the defenseman returned the favor on 49:02 as Ovechkin made it 4-0. Richard Gynge marked his return to the Dynamo roster with a goal.
Traktor tops the table
Last season’s regular season champion Traktor Chelyabinsk is leading the way once again after a 3-1 win over Slovan Bratislava put it one point clear at the top. All the scoring came in the first 35 minutes, with Vladimir Antipov getting the eventual winner as Traktor make it five wins in five.
Christensen continues hot streak
Erik Christensen scored twice to take his goal tally to six in four games as Lev Prague returned to winning ways at Avtomobilist. The Czech side had lost its last two, and trailed twice in the first period, but turned it around after the interval thanks to Christensen and Tomas Surovy. The win takes the league newcomer back to the top of the Western Conference, with 23 points from 12 games.
Salavat Yulaev ends losing run
Alexander Pankov scored twice for Salavat Yulaev, but the Ufa side needed overtime to win at Dinamo Riga. Paul Szczechura, recently signed from Lev, leveled it for Dinamo on 54:24 but Salavat Yulaev ended a three-game losing streak thanks to Igor Mirnov’s fourth goal in three games.
Around the league
Yugra Khanty Mansiysk ended a six game losing streak with a dramatic last-gasp win over Metallurg Novokuznetsk. Anton But scored on 59:17 to snatch a 4-3 win.
Barys Astana won 3-1 at home to Amur Khabarovsk, with Nigel Dawes getting the game-winner, his fifth goal of the season.
Avangard beat Sibir in the last second of overtime thanks to Andrei Taratukhin’s goal. The teams tied 1-1 in regulation.