Andy Potts Andy Potts
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Wherever you watched your hockey in Moscow, you saw a visiting team fail to hold a 2-0 lead. For Dinamo Riga at Dynamo Moscow, the 2-3 loss cost a return to the top eight; the Latvians remain a point behind Sochi. For Dinamo Minsk at CSKA, a valiant defensive display almost spiked the Army Men’s guns but an OT winner saw the host back on top of the table. Curt Fraser earned his first win in the KHL after Kunlun surprised Avangard, Amur thrashed Admiral 7-0 and Severstal defeated Vityaz in a shoot-out.

Demolition derby

Admiral Vladivostok 0 Amur Khabarovsk 7 (0-3, 0-2, 0-2)

It’s rare to see a local derby as one-sided as this one. Amur’s 7-0 victory was the biggest win ever in this Far East match-up, a pairing that has played 26 times. It was also the visitor’s biggest win of the season and represented back-to-back shut-outs for goalie Marek Langhamer.

Amur ran away with it in the first eight minutes. Valentin Pyanov, Vitaly Atyushov and Denis Golubev all found the net in a blistering start that left Admiral holed below the water line. Things didn’t get any better for the host: the next significant incident saw Ivan Mishchenko ejected from the game late in the first period.

Admiral killed that penalty but fell further behind in the second period. Jan Kolar potted a fourth then Tomas Zohorna scored a short-handed goal. The final frame brought two more goals for the visitor: Alexander Kuznetsov made it 6-0, matching Admiral’s best result in this fixture back in 2015, then Nikita Kamalov got his first goal in almost exactly two years to complete the rout.

Red Star beats Avangard at last

Kunlun Red Star 5 Avangard Omsk 2 (2-0, 1-0, 2-2)

Red Star got its first ever victory against Avangard, snapping a six-game losing streak and reviving its hopes of making the playoffs. It was a first KHL victory for new head coach Curt Fraser, following defeats in his first three games.

The home success owed much to the power play combination of Drew Shore, Martin St.Pierre and Veli-Matti Savinainen. The Finn converted both of Kunlun’s PP chances, with his two colleagues racking up the helpers each time. Shore had a third assist on the night, contributing to Brandon Yip’s 17th goal of the season. That made it 3-0 at the second intermission.

Avangard raised the tempo in the third period. Sergei Shumakov pulled a goal back early in the frame, but Zach Yuen’s first of the season restored a comfortable lead for Kunlun. A David Desharnais power play goal with 10 minutes to play threatened to set up an anxious finale but Red Star sealed the points when Olli Palola scored into an empty net late on.

Severstal strikes late to grab shoot-out win

Severstal Cherepovets 2 Vityaz Moscow Region 1 SO (0-0, 0-1, 1-0, 0-0, 1-0)

Vityaz dropped a point as it looks to secure a playoff place, allowing a late equalizer in Cherepovets before going down to a shoot-out loss.

The visitor opened the scoring in the 22nd minute when Borna Rendulic converted a 5-on-3 situation and it was starting to look like the Croatian’s goal might be enough to win it. However, a power play goal from Dmitry Markovin with four minutes left for the game to the extras.

Overtime was goalless and home goalie Dominik Furch came out on top in the shoot-out as Vityaz failed to score. Markovin and Alexander Petunin both found Alexander Samonov’s net to give Severstal the win.

Riga wastes a golden chance to return to the top eight

Dynamo Moscow 3 Dinamo Riga 2 (0-1, 1-1, 2-0)

Dinamo Riga squandered a chance to move into the playoff places when it blew a two-goal lead in Moscow. To make matters worse for the Latvians, their former captain Miks Indrasis potted the game-winning goal for Dynamo.

Photo: 28.01.19. KHL Championship 2018-2019. Dynamo (Moscow) - Dinamo (Riga)

Riga came into the game a point behind eighth-placed HC Sochi. The early signs were promising for the visitor: a power play goal from Brandon McMillan opened the scoring in the 13th minute and Kristaps Zile doubled the lead at the start of the second period.

Moscow hit back late in the middle session when Dmitry Moiseyev reduced the arrears. But the game was won and lost in the space of 30 seconds early in the third. Vladislav Yefremov tied the scores as Michal Cajkovsky got his first point since joining Dynamo last month. Then came Indrasis, sent off to the races by an Artyom Volkov and deking around Mathew Maione before applying the finish. Riga remains outside the playoff places.

Minsk gives CSKA a scare

CSKA Moscow 3 Dinamo Minsk 2 OT (0-0, 0-2, 2-0, 1-0)

Dynamo wasn’t the only team to claw back a 0-2 deficit in Moscow – although CSKA needed overtime to complete its victory over Dinamo Minsk.

Photo: 28.01.19. KHL Championship 2018-2019. CSKA (Moscow) - Dinamo (Minsk)

After losing to Barys in its last game – and dropping off the top of the KHL table as a result – CSKA had a point to prove here. However, the Army Men failed to turn a powerful first-period display into goals and was punished in the second session as Dinamo scored twice from just four shots on Ilya Sorokin’s net. Evgeny Lisovets and Evgeny Kovyrshin were the clinical finishers: Dinamo led 2-0 despite a shot count that stood 27-7 in CSKA’s favor.

Eventually, though, the dam broke. Kirill Kaprizov finally beat Jhonas Enroth early in the third and after another one-sided session Mikhail Naumenkov tied the game with little over two minutes to play. Dinamo’s brave defense fell narrowly short and in overtime Kaprizov potted the decider. Linden Vey assisted on all three CSKA goals.

Andy Potts Andy Potts
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Avangard (Omsk) Avangard (Omsk)
Admiral (Vladivostok) Admiral (Vladivostok)
Amur (Khabarovsk) Amur (Khabarovsk)
Vityaz (Moscow Region) Vityaz (Moscow Region)
Dinamo (Minsk) Dinamo (Minsk)
Dinamo (Riga) Dinamo (Riga)
Kunlun Red Star (Beijing) Kunlun Red Star (Beijing)
Severstal (Cherepovets) Severstal (Cherepovets)
HC Dynamo (Moscow) HC Dynamo (Moscow)
CSKA (Moscow) CSKA (Moscow)
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