Andy Potts,
exclusive for

The big game of the day was all about Ilya Kovalchuk, as SKA’s forward got three goals and an assist in his team’s 5-2 win at CSKA. Lokomotiv also had a good result, edging Jokerit 4-3 in a game dominated by power play goals. Kovi wasn’t the only hat-trick man, but Matthew Frattin’s treble for Barys could not prevent a 3-4 loss at Spartak. Sibir made the comeback of the day, scoring twice in the last minute to deny Dinamo Riga, then winning in a shoot-out.

Alexandrov sinks Kunlun again

Kunlun Red Star 2 Admiral Vladivostok 3 SO (0-0, 2-1, 0-1, 0-0, 0-1)

On Saturday, Admiral won in a shoot-out at Kunlun thanks to Viktor Alexandrov. On Monday, the forward repeated the trick with the post-game winner after he inspired a recovery in regulation time.

The host led 2-0 thanks to power play goals from Jesse Blacker and Wojtek Wolski. But Alexandrov reduced the arrears in the second period and made a crucial interception to set up Dmitry Sayustov for the tying goal. Then, just as he did on Saturday, that man Alexandrov poached the decisive goal. A good couple of days for Admiral, but Alexandrov is winning more games than friends in China.

Makeyev double wraps up Vityaz win

Vityaz Podolsk 4 Dinamo Minsk 0 (1-0, 2-0, 1-0)

Vityaz got a much-needed win as Dinamo failed to solve Igor Saprykin. The home goalie made 27 saves to snap his team’s six-game losing streak.

Dmitry Semin got Vityaz on the way with an 11th-minute power play goal, and Vojtech Mozik doubled the lead at the half-hour mark.

Then Alexei Makeyev added two more – one on the power play, the other short-handed – to secure a good win.

Photo: 23.10.17. KHL Championship 2017/18. Vityaz (Moscow Region) - Dinamo (Minsk)

Kovalchuk treble sinks CSKA

CSKA Moscow 2 SKA St. Petersburg 5 (0-0, 0-1, 2-4)

Big players deliver in the big games – and Ilya Kovalchuk proved that point with a hat-trick as SKA brushed aside CSKA in the Army Derby.

The twin regiments of Army Men, for so long the dominant clubs in the Western Conference, faced off in Monday’s big match-up. But instead of a close-fought clash, it ended as something of a rout as SKA romped to victory.

The first two periods were tight. Only Vyacheslav Voynov’s 33rd-minute power play goal separated the teams through 40 minutes of action. Kovalchuk had the assist on that play, supplying a pass to the blue line for Voynov to despatch past Ilya Sorokin. Early in the third, another SKA power play ended when Pavel Datsyuk found Kovi for a one-timer that ripped into the net to double the lead.

SKA’s alternate captain got his second of the night when he gobbled up Nikolai Prokhorkin’s pass to the back door to make it 3-0 before the home team finally got onto the scoreboard thanks to a power play goal from Andrei Kuzmenko. Datsyuk quickly shut the door on any possible fight back – his goal was SKA’s only one without a contribution from Kovalchuk – and Kovi himself wrapped up a hat-trick with an empty-net goal after Ivan Telegin had given CSKA a glimmer of hope.

Photo: 23.10.17. KHL Championship 2017/18. CSKA (Moscow) - SKA (St.Petersburg)

Lokomotiv edges a battle of the power plays

Jokerit Helsinki 3 Lokomotiv Yaroslavl 4 (1-3, 2-1, 0-0)

The other big game in the Western Conference saw Jokerit – whose 15-game winning run ended in overtime at SKA on Saturday – face a Lokomotiv team eager to make up ground under new head coach Dmitry Kvartalnov.

The visitor made a blazing start, taking just 10 seconds to convert a 5-on-3 power play as Brandon Kozun gave Loko a seventh-minute lead. Petri Kontiola quickly doubled the advantage before the home team was left baffled when it had a goal ruled out for high-sticking. Niklas Jensen soon turned those frowns around, working a 1-2 with Peter Regin to reduce the deficit on the power play, but Loko finished the first period strongly thanks to a Staffan Kronwall strike.

The second period continued in the same vein at first. Pavel Kraskovsky made it 4-1, then Jokerit was forced to defend a long 3-on-5 penalty. But in a game characterized by penalty calls, the home side gained a lifeline as Loko fell foul of the officials. John Norman got one back on a power play, and immediately afterwards the Finns had a 5-on-3 chance which Eeli Tolvanen converted to make it a one-goal game.

Now came the home charge, but Alexander Sudnitsin held firm in the Loko net to secure a goalless third period and a 4-3 victory for the visitor.

Chudinov chips in as Avangard wins

Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod 1 Avangard Omsk 2 (1-0, 0-1, 0-1)

Young forward Mikhail Smolin got his third KHL goal for Torpedo, but still finished on the losing side.

The 20-year-old opened the scoring in the third minute, but Avangard’s veteran forward Alexander Perezhogin tied the game after 34 minutes. Perezhogin’s goal featured an assist from recent signing Maxim Chudinov, following his move from SKA.

There were few clear chances to win the game for either team, but Ilya Mikheyev grabbed the all-important goal in the 57th minute to give Avangard the points.

Hudacek defies Ugra

Severstal Cherepovets 2 Ugra Khanty-Mansiysk 0 (0-0, 2-0, 0-0)

Julius Hudacek made 33 saves to help Severstal snap a three-game losing run.

Ugra had more shots on goal in this game, but could not find a way past the Slovak goalie. At the other end, second-period markers from Alexander Shcherbina and Oleg Yashin made the difference as Severstal strengthened its grip on eighth place in the West.

Late shock for Dinamo

Dinamo Riga 2 Sibir Novosibirk 3 SO (0-0, 0-0, 2-2, 0-0, 0-1)

With one minute to play, Dinamo led this game by two goals … but the Latvians ended up beaten once again after a spectacular Sibir recovery.

Andrei Sigaryov pulled one back with 54 seconds on the clock, and Patrick Zackrisson snatched a dramatic tying goal nine seconds before the hooter. After a goalless period of overtime, Alexander Bergstrom got the shoot-out winner for the visitor.

But it could have been so different for Dinamo. When Anssi Salmela scored in the 58th minute, adding to Danny Kristo’s opener, the home team seemed to be on course to record back-to-back wins for the first time this season. But Sibir had other ideas.

Frattin’s hat-trick not enough for Barys

Spartak Moscow 4 Barys Astana 3 OT (2-0, 1-2, 0-1, 1-0)

Matthew Frattin scored a hat-trick for Barys, but still finished on the losing team in Moscow.

At first, this game was all about Spartak, with the host opening a 2-0 lead in the first period. Artyom Podshendyalov and Ben Maxwell did the damage before Frattin opened his account early in the second.

Dmitry Kalinin made it 3-1 for the Red-and-Whites, but Frattin reeled in that deficit, tying the game with 12 minutes left in regulation.

Neither team could win it inside 60 minutes, but Vyacheslav Leshchenko took the points for Spartak in overtime.

Photo: 23.10.17. KHL Championship 2017/18. Spartak (Moscow) - Barys (Astana)

Kaspar strikes to sink old team-mates

Slovan Bratislava 4 Dynamo Moscow 2 (0-0, 3-1, 1-1)

Lukas Kaspar scored twice against his former club to send Dynamo tumbling to defeat in Slovakia.

The Czech international scored late in the second period to make it 3-1 to Slovan, then secured the victory with an empty-net goal after Andrei Kuteikin had hauled the Blue-and-Whites back into contention.

Earlier, Colby Genoway gave Slovan a 28th-minute lead before Vladimir Bryukvin and Zach Boychuk traded goals in quick succession. Former Sibir man Boychuk claimed his first goal since joining Slovan.

Andy Potts,
exclusive for

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