Sergei Slepyshev’s Admiral is emerging as one of the surprise packages in the Eastern Conference and today’s victory at Traktor saw the Sailors move to fifth in the table.
This time it started after just 20 seconds when new signing Alexander Osipov opened the scoring for Admiral. Osipov was playing only his second game since leaving Spartak. The Sailors had a big power play chance, enjoying a 5-on-3 situation for two full minutes, but failed to capitalize. The second goal had to wait until late in the opening stanza when Martin Bakos converted the rebound from an Adam Almqvist shot.
Traktor was not about to give up, though. The home team had the better of the second period and reduced the deficit through Dmitry Kalinin in the 34th minute. Admiral looked to tighten up the game in the third but, with time running out, a Lukas Sedlak power play goal tied it up. Overtime could not separate the teams, despite a power play for Traktor in the last minute, and Martin Bakos succeeded with the first attempt in the shoot-out to set Admiral on course for the extra point.
This match-up between an Eastern Conference high-flyer and a Western Conference struggler went the way of the form book thanks to a powerful second-period display from the home team. Earlier this season the teams had met in Latvia, where Avangard stormed to a 7-0 victory but Dinamo was boosted by its win over Dinamo Minsk last time out.
That increased confidence was visible at the start, with Dinamo opening the scoring in the third minute thanks to Daniels Berzins, who applied a redirect on the slot to beat Igor Bobkov. However, that was as good as the afternoon got for the visitor. Valentin Pyanov tied the scores in the ninth minute, potting his first goal of the season after a flurry of shots on Alexander Salak’s net.
The second period saw the home team take complete control with three unanswered goals. Rob Klinkhammer put the Hawks in front with a power play effort before Sergei Shumakov emerged from the sin bin to help create a second goal of the game for Pyanov. Semyon Koshelev added a fourth midway through the game and the outcome was already clear.
There was better news at last for Metallurg as it took the verdict in this clash between the Steelmen of the KHL. The 2-1 verdict in Cherepovets snapped a three-game losing streak and gave a lift to the club after the departure of long-serving director Gennady Velichkin.
Magnitka needed a good start to settle some of the nerves around the team, and Maksim Matushkin supplied the remedy with a well-struck shot to give the visitor a third-minute lead. Late in the second stanza, Nikolai Kulemin’s feed set up Pavel Dorofeyev to make it 2-0.
It looked like Metallurg was well placed to finish the game off, but Severstal hit back almost immediately. Ilya Khokhlov swooped around the back of the net and scored on the wraparound with 20 seconds to play in the period. That set up a nervous final frame with Severstal piling the pressure on the visitor but failing to find another way past Vasily Koshechkin.
Dynamo rallied from 0-2 and 2-3 to defeat the Eastern Conference high-flyer in an entertaining game in Moscow.
The formbook suggested that the Motormen should win here, and the first period went according to that script. Two goals in a minute midway through the session saw the visitor in control, even though the balance of play was more even than the numbers suggested.
That pattern changed in the second period as Dynamo started to generate far more offense. The home team got its reward thanks to goals from Miks Indrasis and Yegor Zaitsev but early in the third period found itself playing 3-on-4 and duly allowed a power play goal for Brooks Macek.
Then the action went up another notch. Ivan Igumnov tied the scores, Alexander Yeryomenko made a big stop to deny Anatoly Golyshev a breakaway goal, then Dmitrij Jaskin put the home team in front for the first time with six minutes left to play. Avtomobilist looked to force its way back, even playing a few seconds of 6-on-4 as the clock wound down, but the last minute saw Dynamo score twice – Jaskin getting his second of the game – to give the final scoreline a slightly flattering look for the host.
Spartak’s season continues to alternate between impressive wins and frustrating losses. After defeat at Severstal last time out, Oleg Znarok and his colleagues rang the changes for the start of the Red-and-White’s home stand – but missed out against Amur in a shoot-out.
The key change was the introduction of new signing Ansel Galimov, recently arrived from Severstal. He slotted into the second line, while fellow forward Ilya Talaluyev was sent to Spartak’s VHL affiliate. Denis Kokarev made his 700th KHL appearance, only the third player to reach that landmark behind Sergei Mozyakin and Evgeny Biryukov.
Amur, meanwhile, has been steadily improving since a long losing streak at the start of the season. And the visitor kept up that progress in Moscow. Despite having to absorb plenty of home pressure, the Tigers took a second-period lead through Tomas Zohorna and set about defending that advantage resolutely. Martins Karsums tied the game midway through the third period but there was no further scoring and the game went to a shoot-out.