Salavat snapped a four-game losing streak and gained swift revenge for last week’s defeat in Chelyabinsk. The home team, back on the ice just 24 hours after losing to Jokerit, recovered from an early Traktor goal to secure a win that returns the team to third place in the Eastern Conference. However, Ufa is level on points with Barys, but has played four games more.
Traktor hoped to build on its 4-2 victory over Salavat in Chelyabinsk last week and made a perfect start when Lukas Sedlak opened the scoring in the eighth minute. However, the home team rallied fast. Dmitry Kugryshev tied the scores after a lengthy video review confirmed there was no hand pass in the build-up, then Zakhar Arzamastsev’s power play goal put the men in green into the lead.
Nick Bailen tied the scores at the start of the second period, again on the power play, but more penalty trouble for Traktor turned the game back in Salavat Yulaev’s favor. Philip Larsen restored the lead then had an assist as Linus Omark made it 4-2. Late in the second period, Traktor goalie Vladislav Sukhachyov suffered an injury, bringing Stanislav Galimov into the game for his Traktor debut. While the visitor awaits more details of Sukhachyov’s injury, Galimov allowed one more goal midway through the third period.
For several seasons, Mike Pelino was the trusted lieutenant in Magnitogorsk. An experienced and respected assistant coach, he was part of the coaching team that won two Gagarin Cups. However, at the start of this season he moved from Avangard to Loko to join Craig MacTavish and found himself thrust into the spotlight when a poor start to the campaign saw the Oilers legend dismissed.
Metallurg also changed coaches early in the season, with Ilya Vorobyov returning in place of Josef Jandac. Both teams enjoyed improved form after those moves, but both remain in the thick of a race for a playoff spot.
There was plenty riding on this game, and it began as an open contest. The teams shared 30 attempts on goal in the first period, but neither Ilya Konovalov nor Vasily Koshechkin was beaten. It wasn’t until late in the second that young defenseman Grigory Dronov – a player who Pelino saw emerging through the Metallurg system – opened the scoring for the visitor.
The home team responded at the start of the third. Daniil Apalkov almost steered a Roman Savchenko shot into the net before Denis Alexeyev’s thumping one-timer beat Koshechkin. Dennis Rasmussen restored the visitor’s lead almost immediately but Savchenko tied it up for a second time and sent the game to overtime. There was no further scoring and even the shoot-out saw 15 unsuccessful attempts before Stephane Da Costa got the decisive tally.
Dinamo remains stuck on the foot of the Western Conference table after suffering a fourth successive loss. Sochi consolidates ninth place after Malte Stromwall led the scoring in his team’s second win in three games.
The host wasted little time in taking the lead: Oleg Pogorishny’s point shot was deflected home by Dmitry Lugin after 58 seconds. Soon afterwards, Yury Alexandrov got forward to fire home the second goal off a Robert Rosen pass. The second period saw that lead extend to 4-0 with two markers from Stromwall, the second from a penalty shot. Dinamo pulled one back late in the middle frame Dmitry Znakharenko but there was no way back.
An overtime goal from Peter Holland gave Avtomobilist the verdict at Torpedo. The Canadian’s seventh goal of the season snapped a 2-2 tie and avenged a 3-4 loss in Yekaterinburg earlier in the season.
Torpedo took the lead late in the first period through Mikhail Varnakov during a spell of 4-on-4 action. However, early in the second period, Nigel Dawes tied it up on the power play. Stanislav Bocharov restored the Torpedo lead, again on the power play, but that was as good as it got for the home team.
Midway through the third period Dan Sexton tied the game once again and Holland’s solo effort settled the game in the 63rd minute. The win was all the more satisfying for a visiting team missing the injured Pavel Datsyuk, Anatoly Golyshev and Geoff Platt.