WESTERN CONFERENCE QUARTERFINAL
(2) Jokerit Helsinki 3
(7) Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod 2
Torpedo leads the series 3-2
Jokerit kept its playoff hopes alive with victory in Game 5 as this juddering series gets set for a dramatic conclusion.
After four games studded with major penalties and dominated by bad feeling between the two teams, this one saw less time in the sin-bins. But there was still plenty of robust confrontation out on the ice as both teams continued to contest every last play.
Peter Regin opened the scoring in this one with a power play goal. He found plenty of space on the right channel and drilled in a shot from the top of the face-off circle midway through the first period.
The middle session saw the teams trade goals. Vladimir Galuzin tied it up for Torpedo but another power play gave Brandon Kozun the chance to unleash a slapshot that gave Ilya Proskuryakov no chance. Torpedo’s lack of man-power told: the Canadian forward had plenty of time to advance into space and none of the four Torpedo players on the ice were in a position to close down the shot in time to help their goalie.
A third-period goal from Niklas Hagman proved to be the game-winner. Juhamatti Aaltonen burst down the right and slung the puck into the center where Hagman was all alone. A quick flash of the stick to deceive Proskuryakov and Jokerit led 3-1.
Torpedo managed to get one back in the last minute when Alexei Potapov turned the puck home from close range, but ran out of time before it could equalize. The action returns to Nizhny Novgorod on Wednesday.