Andy Potts,
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Avangard Omsk fired nine goals past Dinamo Riga while Medvescak enjoyed a surprise win over Metallurg Magnitogorsk. Elsewhere Dustin Boyd got his first goals of the season for Barys and Andrei Razin finally won his first game as head coach of Ugra.

Avangard on cloud nine

Avangard Omsk 9 Dinamo Riga 3

Dinamo’s unhappy season continues as Avangard went goal crazy at Arena Omsk on Tuesday, finding the net three times in each period to romp to a convincing win.

The tone was set in the first eight minutes when Anton Burdasov, Yegor Martynov and Ilya Mikheyev all scored on Jakub Sedlacek. The unfortunate Czech was chased from the game to bring Janis Kalnins to the ice, and initially that seemed to have changed things. Dinamo rallied and goals from Maris Bicevskis and Gints Meija brought it back to 3-2 by the end of the first period.

Hopes of a recovery were ended emphatically by an even sharper start to the middle stanza. Again, Burdasov scored an early goal; again, Avangard quickly added two more. This time Valentin Pyanov and Ivan Fishchenko found the net, and the treble took less than four minutes. Dinamo had no answer and trailed 2-6 at the second intermission.

Nikolai Lemtyugov, who had assisted on Burdasov’s goals, decided it was time to get on the scoresheet himself in the third period. He grabbed two in three minutes, both with helpers from Alexander Kucheryavenko, before combining with Burdasov to set up Kucheryavenko for the ninth of the game. Pyotr Schastlivy had the final word, grabbing a 51st-minute consolation goal for Dinamo, but the day clearly belonged to the home team.

Medvescak downs defending champ

Medvescak Zagreb 6 Metallurg Magnitogorsk 3

Magnitka arrived in Croatia buoyed by a three-game winning run and faced an opponent struggling for form – but an inspired home performance turned all that on its head.

Francis Pare, a Gagarin Cup winner with Metallurg back in 2014, opened the scoring against his former club in the fifth minute before assisting on Bobby Butler’s power play goal in the 10th to give the home team the early initiative. Alexandre Bolduc added a third early in the second stanza and Magnitka was in trouble, sending young goalie Artyom Zagidulin into the game to demonstrate what he had gained from a recent loan spell at Kunlun.

At the other end, Denis Platonov reduced the deficit with two quick goals, both assisted by Dmitry Kazionov, to make it 3-2 by the midway mark … but Metallurg’s comeback would go no further.

The final stanza began like the first, with an early goal – this time from Terry Galiardi – followed quickly by a power play marker. Lukas Lessio made it 5-2 in the 43rd minute and Medvescak was on its way to victory. Sergei Mozyakin converted a 5-on-3 in the 55th minute to give some hope of salvaging the game, but when Zagidulin was sacrificed late on to add extra offense on a late power play, Mike Glumac scored an empty net goal that wrapped up a surprise win for the Croatians.

Jokerit leaves it late

Metallurg Novokuznetsk 3 Jokerit Helsinki 4

After two successive defeats dropped the Finns to seventh in the West, victory at lowly Novokuznetsk was essential to boost the team’s playoff prospects. But Jokerit made hard work of securing the points as Metallurg powered into a 3-0 lead before fading alarmingly in the final stanza.

Evgeny Solovyov’s power play goal put the home team ahead in the first period and after the intermission things got even better for Kuznya. Alexander Titov struck in the 32nd minute and Alexei Vasilchenko added another power play market in the 34th to leave Jokerit with serious work to do.

Much of that work was accomplished in the 44th minute when the visitor scored twice in 12 seconds to make it a one-goal game. Tommi Huhtala’s unassisted effort was followed by a Jesse Joensuu goal to set nerves jangling among the home players.

Even so, it seemed that Metallurg was going to hang on until penalty trouble late in the game. Andrei Taratukhin and Artyom Mikheyev were sin-binned in quick succession and Ville Lajunen converted that five-on-three advantage. Finally Derek O’Neill got the game-winner with just 40 seconds left to play.

Boyd bags two, sinks Admiral

Admiral Vladivostok 1 Barys Astana 4

Dustin Boyd, who suffered a broken leg in pre-season and missed four months, finally got his first goals of the 2016-17 campaign. Eleven games into his return to action, the Kazakh-Canadian dual national scored twice here to seal a valuable win for Barys against playoff-chasing rival Admiral.

The Kazakh team moves ahead of its Far Eastern opponent with this victory, climbing to seventh place in the Eastern Conference. Barys also has games in hand on all its rivals for a playoff spot. Admiral, meanwhile, is on a run of just one win in seven and drops to eighth, looking nervously at Avtomobilist, Neftekhimik and Sibir, all of which are within four points.

Konstantin Pushkaryov got the opening goal for Barys on an eighth-minute power play, but it wasn’t until midway through the game that Roman Starchenko doubled that lead. Vadim Krasnoslobodtsev reduced the deficit at the start of the third, also on the power play, and visiting head coach Eduard Zankovets admitted that the game was wide open at that point. Fortunately for him and Barys, Boyd finally found his scoring touch, poaching two in 90 seconds to put the game out of Admiral’s reach.

Around the league

Andrei Razin got his first win as head coach of Ugra, claiming a 3-1 verdict at Amur. It was also a notable occasion for Artyom Bulyansky who marked his 300th game for the club with two goals. Bulyansky opened the scoring in the eighth minute, Evgeny Lapenkov made it 2-0 early in the second and the teams traded goals in the 37th minute when Denis Orlovich-Grudkov got his first career KHL marker 15 seconds before Bulyansky’s second of the game.

Dinamo Minsk recovered from giving up a goal on 26 seconds to win 3-1 at Sibir. Maxim Shalunov put the host in front with his 17th of the season to set up a combative first period that saw Vitaly Menshikov pick up nine PIMs in two separate skirmishes. Dinamo turned the game around with a quickfire salvo midway through the second period. Alexander Pavlovich and Andrei Stepanov scored two goals in 63 seconds to put the Belarusians ahead, then Dmitry Korobov got his first of the season in the 34th minute to complete the scoring.

Slovan made it two wins in two days thanks to a 1-0 success at home to Traktor. Michal Hlinka got the only goal early in the second period while Barry Brust made 29 saves for his shut-out and has allowed just one goal in 120 minute of hockey this week.

Andy Potts,
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Related clubs

Avangard (Omsk) Avangard (Omsk)
Admiral (Vladivostok) Admiral (Vladivostok)
Barys (Nur-Sultan) Barys (Nur-Sultan)
Dinamo (Riga) Dinamo (Riga)
Jokerit (Helsinki) Jokerit (Helsinki)
Medvescak (Zagreb) Medvescak (Zagreb)
Metallurg (Magnitogorsk) Metallurg (Magnitogorsk)
Metallurg (Novokuznetsk) Metallurg (Novokuznetsk)
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