It was a good day for both Dinamos. In Latvia, Dinamo Riga enhanced its playoff prospects as Linus Videll potted the winner against Lokomotiv. In Belarus, Dinamo Minsk ended an 11-game losing streak with a 4-1 win over Kunlun Red Star. Torpedo shot seven past Severstal, Spartak won in Ufa and Darren Dietz scored two last-gasp goals but still finished on the losing side as Traktor edged Barys in overtime.
This was a game with a dramatic finale. Alexander Rybakov scored in the 55th minute to put Traktor 3-1 up, and it seemed that the outcome was settled. Barys had other ideas. Henrik Karlsson was recalled to the bench in favor of a sixth skater, and Dietz delivered two goals in 63 seconds to tie that game at 3-3. Now it seemed that the momentum was firmly with the host, but Sharov had the final say when his shot was deflected past the goalie.
Spartak clawed back a two-goal deficit to win in Ufa, continuing the progress it showed after taking Jokerit and Avtombilist to overtime in recent games.
The home team opened a 2-0 lead by the early stages of the second period. There wasn’t much between the sides in terms of general play, but Salavat was more composed in front of the net and collected power play goals from Joonas Kemppainen and Pyotr Khokhryakov. Spartak rallied, with a flamboyant penalty shot from Nikita Filatov and a powerful strike from Andrei Kuteikin to tie the scores.
Anton Burdasov, back from suspension, restored the home lead before the second intermission but Spartak would not be denied. The visitor tied it up through Anatoly Nikontsev before a short-handed goal from Ben Maxwell settled the issue.
Back in Bratislava after two heavy defeats in Vienna, Slovan clearly felt rather more at home. The Slovaks ended a four-game losing streak and restored some pride by edging Sibir and reigniting its playoff push.
The first period saw Chad Rau put Slovan in front, but Sibir refused to give up and took the game to the opposition in the middle frame. Alexander Loginov produced a thunderous shot from center ice to bag a goal reminiscent of Andrei Kuteikin’s celebrated exploits, then Viktor Komarov cashed in on a defensive error to put the Siberians in front.
However, Slovan recovered. After head coach Vladimir Orszagh criticized his players for ‘giving up’ in the game against SKA, his team responded by fighting back to win. Two goals in quick succession, one from Michal Repik, the other from Rau, secured a much-needed boost. Slovan is now just one point outside the playoff places.
Dinamo Minsk finally snapped its 11-game losing streak – and dealt a blow to Red Star’s hopes of getting into the playoff race in the East.
The visitor enjoyed more time on offense than its opponent, and generated more shots on goal, but found Jhonas Enroth in good form in the Dinamo net. However, the game hung on two quick goals in the second period as the Belarusians took control. First, Evgeny Lisovets scored on the power play in the 35th minute, ushering in a period of intense home pressure. Red Star called a time out and tried to reset, but Quinton Howden doubled the advantage within two minutes of the opening goal.
Dmitry Buinitsky extended Dinamo’s lead early in the third before Taylor Beck finally got Red Star on the board with eight minutes left to play. But there was no grandstand finish from the visitor: Denis Kazionov added a fourth and put the game out of reach.
For nine minutes, this game wasn’t going too badly for Severstal. True, Torpedo was buzzing around Dominik Furch’s net in threatening fashion, but Ivan Zakharchuk got the opener for the visitor against the run of play.
The rest of the evening was far less satisfactory for the Steelmen. Torpedo wasted little time in wiping out that opening goal. Mathew Bodie tied it up on the power play, Andy Miele put the host in front and Robert Sabolic added another power play tally to make it 3-1 at the first intermission. Kirill Urakov and Denis Parshin scored early in the second period to leave Severstal floundering; Mikhail Orlov added a sixth.
The final frame saw the teams trade goals, with Parshin and Zakharchuk both getting their second of the night. Parshin’s effort was assisted by Damir Zhafyarov, who picked up his second point as he marked his 300th KHL appearance.
Avangard bounced back from its home loss against Torpedo – but Admiral pushed all the way before slipping to a third straight defeat.
In the early stages, it all seemed pretty straightforward for the home team. Chances were scarce at both ends, but David Desharnais opened the scoring in the fourth minute then supplied the assist as Sergei Shirokov doubled the lead before the intermission.
After that, though, it got tougher. Vojtech Polak pulled a goal back for Admiral and Avangard lost its time-out after a failed coach’s challenge on the play. Semyon Koshelev made it 3-1, but almost immediately Sergei Konkov got it back to a one-goal game. Early in the third Ansel Galimov got a fourth for Avangard, but there was still time for some nail-biting moments after Alexander Ugolnikov’s power play goal gave Admiral hope of snatching something from the game.
A Linus Videll goal midway through the third period secured Dinamo a crucial win in the Western Conference playoff race. Victory over Lokomotiv lifts the Latvians to seventh, and opens a two-point gap over ninth-placed Dynamo Moscow.
The home team made a flying start, going 2-0 up inside six minutes. Mikelis Redlihs and Gints Meija, two veterans of the roster, got the goals; young Loko goalie Ilya Konovalov was called back to the bench.
His replacement, Czech international Alexander Salak, saw his team draw level with two quick goals of its own midway through the game. Yegor Averin got one back in the 31st minute and two minutes later Rushan Rafikov tied it up. However, Salak was beaten for the first time in the 49th minute when Videll’s one-timer from between the hash marks proved too much for him.