SKA continues to look unstoppable, racking up its 14th victory of the season with a 9-1 thrashing of Ugra. Kunlun travelled to Spartak without suspended head coach Mike Keenan, and suffered a 6-2 loss. Lokomotiv also suffered a big defeat, crashing 6-1 at Avangard after allowing four power play goals. And there was high-scoring action in Kazakhstan, where Dynamo Moscow won 5-3 at Barys.
Kunlun, without suspended head coach Mike Keenan, turned in an anaemic display to suffer a third successive defeat as Maxim Trunyov hit a hat-trick for Spartak.
The home team took the initiative in the first period. Ryan Stoa opened the scoring after just 37 seconds, and even though Kunlun had its fair share of opportunities, Trunyov was the next player on the scoresheet to make it 2-0 in the 19th minute.
The teams traded power play goals in the middle session, with Lukas Radil extending Spartak’s lead before Brandon DeFazio pulled one back for Kunlun. Then Radil and Trunyov dominated the third period as Spartak added three further goals. Cory Kane got Kunlun’s second.
Sibir head coach Pavel Zubov faced some serious criticism after his team went down 0-2 at home to Dynamo Moscow in the week, but recovered with an improved performance against the Belarusians.
Admittedly, it was only in the second period that Sibir really looked to be on top of its game – taking control with two answered goals. The first session was evenly-matched, and in the third the home team failed to muster a shot on Jhonas Enroth’s net as Dinamo tried to turn the game around.
But in that middle stanza Sibir impressed. Vladislav Naumov opened the scoring in the 22nd minute with a shot from the blue line, then Patrik Zackrisson made it 2-0 on the power play in the 29th. Further progress was thwarted by penalties on the host, though, and in the third period Andrei Stepanov’s late goal for Dinamo threatened to spark a revival from the visitor.
Lokomotiv arrived in Omsk looking for its sixth win in a row, but left after seeing six pucks fly into its net as the Avangard power play delivered four goals.
The first half of the game was competitive: Semyon Koshelev put the host in front after 44 second, but Lokomotiv remained a lively proposition even after Kirill Semyonov doubled that advantage. And the visitor had the best of the second period, cutting Avangard’s lead through Max Talbot in the 28th minute.
But then the penalty trouble started. A too many men call late in the second period enabled Dmitry Kugryshev to make it 3-1, and the final stanza saw Avangard take complete control. A double minor on Nikita Cherepanov gave Vitaly Menshikov the chance to add a fourth, and when Loko was reduced to three men in the 53rd minute, Yegor Martynov struck twice to maximize the pain for the Railwaymen.
Most coaches would regard a 9-1 victory as more or less perfect performance. Not so Oleg Znarok. After SKA made it 14 wins out of 14 so far this season, he still found something to grumble about.
It was unfortunate, SKA’s head coach reflected, that the margin suggested his team had enjoyed an easy game; in truth, he felt, there were some serious weaknesses in the team’s play and it could have been very different had Ugra been able to properly exploit them.
Most observers would struggle to see the problem. Once Vyacheslav Voynov – still feeling his way back to full fitness – opened the scoring in the 10th minute, the game was heading in one direction. Nikita Gusev added a second, Pavel Varfolomeyev’s reply for Ugra kept the scoreline rather closer than many of the other stats from the first period.
In the second, Ugra remained competitive until halfway. Then Gusev added a second on the power play before Anton Belov and Sergei Shirokov scored twice in a minute to take the game away. Shirokov got his second of the night in the final stanza, Patrik Hersley, Alexander Dergachyov and Ilya Kablukov completed the rout.
This game pitted Nigel Dawes against his long-term strike partner Dustin Boyd for the first time since the latter moved to Moscow. But while Dawes won the individual battle, scoring twice to Boyd’s one, Dynamo claimed the three points in Kazakhstan.
Dawes’ double saw Barys come back from 1-3 down – Boyd having grabbed the third for the visitor – to tie the game with 12 minutes to play. But the revival ended there: Andrei Alexeyev put Dynamo in front once again in the 56th minute and Daniil Tarasov found the empty net late on to settle the outcome.
Earlier, Nikita Komarov gave Dynamo a fifth-minute lead, and after Konstantin Pushkaryov tied it up, goals from Martins Karsums and Boyd set the visitor on its way to victory despite Dawes’ best efforts.
Goalies were on top in Nizhny Novgorod, where it took until the 65th minute to see a goal. Kaspars Daugavins finally broke the deadlock for Torpedo, deep into overtime; the Latvain forward handed his team victory.
Two goals from Alexander Kalugin led Vityaz to a comfortable victory over Slovan.
The 23-year-old forward recorded his first ever KHL markers in this game. He got his first in the 23rd minute, touching home the rebound after Artyom Voroshilo’s shot from the blue line. That came just 21 seconds after Ivan Petrakov opened the scoring for the home team, and put a serious dampener on Slovan’s hopes of getting something from this game.
The third period brought two more home goals: Nikita Vyglazov added a third in the 42nd minute and, 10 minutes later, Kalugin completed the scoring.
Yury Trubachyov handed Severstal a shoot-out victory after his team clawed back a two-goal deficit at home to Admiral.
It was plain sailing for the visitor in the first period, with goals from Pavel Makhanovsky and Maxim Kazakov opening a 2-0 lead. But Admiral hit choppy waters at the end of the second session as Pavel Chernov and Dmitry Kagarlitsky scored twice in two minutes to tie it up.
There was little between the times in two further scoreless sessions, but Trabuchyov found the net with the 10th attempt in the shoot-out to give the Steelmen the verdict.