Two goals from Anton Burdasov led Salavat Yulaev to a shock 4-1 win at SKA and propelled the Ufa captain to the top of the scoring charts. Burdasov had 10 (4+6) points already this season. Elsewhere, CSKA’s power play overwhelmed Dynamo in the Moscow derby and Dinamo Riga blanked Sibir to win its first home game of the season.
Salavat Yulaev produced the shock result of the season so far with an impressive 4-1 victory at SKA. Despite falling behind early on and finding itself heavily outshot throughout, the visitor produced some clinical finishing to take its chances and pouch a notable win.
Early on, it was all about the home team. SKA, aware of Salavat Yulaev’s injury problems, went for the jugular and the shots rained in on Andrei Kareyev’s net. When Nikolai Prokhorkin scored from close range in the ninth minute it was no more than the host deserved.
But Salavat Yulaev did not buckle. SKA’s first-period dominance did not yield any more goals, and when Nikita Gusev took a high-sticking minor early in the second frame, the visitor seized its chance. Anton Burdasov, who has started the season in fine form, fired home the tying goal with Magnus Hellberg screened by Pyotr Khokhryakov. SKA was unable to respond, and the teams remained deadlocked at the second intermission.
Then Burdasov struck again, with Khokhryakov supplying the assist. Three minutes into the final stanza a turnover in center ice sent Salavat Yulaev surging forward, Khokhryakov held off Andrei Zubarev behind the net and fed the pass out in front where Burdasov smashed home a one timer for his fourth goal and 10th point of the season. Salavat Yulaev’s captain is leading by example. Two minutes later and another power play goal – this time for Dmitry Kugryshev – made it 3-1 and Salavat was contemplating a successful smash-and-grab raid. SKA searched in vain for a foothold in the game; Kareyev, replacing the injured Juha Metsola, made 37 saves and Philip Larsen wrapped up the win with an empty net goal.
The first Moscow derby of the season went the way of the favorite, with CSKA wrapping up this game inside the first period.
Three unanswered goals in the opening stanza put the outcome beyond realistic doubt; a last-minute Miks Indrasis effort represented scant consolation for the host, which has managed just one victory in four home games.
Dynamo got off to the worst possible start. A penalty against Dmitry Kagarlitsky after 42 seconds helped CSKA take control early on. A well-worked combination between Maxim Shalunov and Jannik Hansen presented Sergei Tolchinsky with the opening goal. Five minutes later, with Kagarlitsky in the box again, Greg Scott quarterbacked the CSKA PP and delivered a beautifully-weighted pass for Alexander Popov to double the Army Men’s lead.
Before the first period was over, a third Dynamo penalty led to a third CSKA goal. Anton Slepyshev found Ivan Bocharov’s top corner from the left-hand circle to end the goalie’s evening in the 16th minute. CSKA had not scored a single power play goal in its first three games; now it had three in three attempts on the night.
The second period saw more CSKA pressure – the shot count was 14-3 for the visitor – but Dynamo managed to cut out the penalties and kept the score at 0-3. Alexander Yeryomenko produced a solid game between the piping, but Dynamo’s offense was unable to find a way back into contention. Finally, CSKA took its first penalty of the night in the dying minutes and Indrasis forced the puck into the net to make it 1-3. But this was a night when Dynamo definitely paid the penalty.
Life in Latvia is looking up. After a tough season last time around, Dinamo has made a bright start and began its home fixtures with a convincing win over Sibir. Kristers Gudlevskis got his first KHL shut-out, five years after making his debut for Dinamo, while first period goals from long-serving forwards Lauris Darzins and Mikelis Redlihs put the home team in control of this one. Linus Videll assisted on both efforts and added a goal of his own late in the game.
Where recent seasons have seen Dinamo struggle, this term already looks more promising. A battling defeat at a highly-fancied Avtomobilist team was followed by an impressive win at Metallurg, meaning it was a confident home side that faced winless Sibir. And it took just four minutes for that confidence to be rewarded. Videll led the breakaway and served up a dish for Darzins to fire home the opening goal. A power play effort from Redlihs doubled that lead as Sibir struggled to play with any kind of fluency in a one-sided first period.
The visitor did better in a stop-start middle stanza with Dinamo running into some penalty trouble. However, there was no further scoring until midway through the third when another Latvian power play saw a mighty heave from Mathew Maione pinball around the crease until Videll stuck it in the net.