Amur got instant revenge for its shoot-out loss at home to Torpedo, defeating David Nemirovsky’s team in the second encounter of this mini-series and snapping a three-game losing streak into the bargain.
Nemirovsky made some changes to his line-up after the narrow win on Sunday, bringing in Danil Voyevodin and Vladimir Mikhasyonok. And Voyevodin repaid that faith when he scored the opening goal in the third minute of the game.
However, Amur soon responded, with Kirill Rasskazov on target for the second game in a row to tie it up in the sixth minute. And, after a goalless second period, the home team got the winner midway through the third when Vladimir Butuzov fired home from the dot.
Severstal defeated Sibir for the second time this season after Yegor Morozov settled a shoot-out in the visitor’s favor in Siberia.
The Steelmen took the lead midway through the first period when Alexander Polunin’s shot deflected off the skate of defenseman Ilya Khokhlov and flew into the net. It wasn’t until late in the opening frame that Sibir began to make its presence felt, with a solid power play testing the Severstal defense but failing to tie the game.
In the second stanza, though, the host turned the scoreline around. Evgeny Chesalin emerged from the sin bin to get the puck and race to the net and tie the game. Then Alexander Sharov potted his first of the season, converting a Yegor Milovzorov pass at the back door.
A needless penalty for Mikael Ruohomaa in the third period let Severstal back into the game. The Finn, frustrated over a missed chance, smashed his stick as his set on the bench. The officials noticed and removed him from the game. Sibir’s 5-on-3 advantage was suddenly a 4-on-4 situation and Polunin got his second of the game off Vladislav Kodola’s assist. That took the game to the shoot-out and Alexander Petunin was on target again before Morozov potted the decider.
Jokerit’s captain Peter Regin returned to the club — and celebrated a 7-1 victory over a Spartak team struggling for any kind of form this season.
The Dane was not among the scorers in this impressive display, however, with Mikko Lehtonen playing the lead role. The defenseman finished with 4 (2+2) points in a powerful performance. Lehtonen started with an assist as Veli-Matti Savinainen opened the scoring in the 12th minute. One minute later, Eeli Tolvanen made it 2-0 and Spartak had a sinking feeling.
Early in the second, Lehtonen scored his first goal of the night, a powerful effort that gave Julius Hudacek no chance. That prompted a change and Pavel Khomchenko came to the crease but could not stem the tide of Jokerit scoring for long. The youngster was beaten late in the middle frame when Brian O’Neill got a short-handed goal and went on to allow three more in the third after Nikita Pivtsakin got Spartak on the board.
Jonathan Pudas maintained his bright start to life in the KHL when he added a fifth (Lehtonen among the assists again) then Savinainen and Lehtonen potted their second goals of the game to complete an emphatic final score. That makes it three wins on the spin for the Finns, fully recovered from the wobble that brought losses to CSKA and Avangard. Spartak remains in ninth, outside the playoff places.
The result was possibly the biggest surprise of the day. It wasn’t so much that Lokomotiv was not expected to win in Podolsk — realistically, this game always looked difficult to call. It was that nobody could have imaged that Vityaz would lose so heavily. The home team was on a run of four wins from five games and thumped Dinamo Riga 6-1 last time out. But Loko enjoyed an evening when everything went right and the final score was lopsided.
An early goal made a big difference to the visitor. When Denis Alexeyev found the net in the third minute, it gave Andrei Skabelka’s team enormous confidence for the rest of the game. Even so, the first period was evenly contested; a power play goal from Andre Petersson gave the Railwaymen a 2-0 advantage that didn’t entirely reflect the balance of play.
The middle frame saw Lokomotiv take a tighter grip on the action, outshooting Vityaz 13-6. Oddly enough, though, there was no further scoring and the game was very much alive going into the third. However, it didn’t take long for the visitor to achieve a decisive lead. Nikolai Kovalenko scored his first of the season in the 42nd minute to make it 3-0 and there were late goals from Pavel Kraskovsky and Vladimir Tkachyov to complete the rout. Eddie Pasquale, making his Lokomotiv debut, celebrated with a shut-out after stopping 29 shots.
Moscow hosted the big game of the day and table-topping CSKA improved its position with a derby win over Dynamo. The home team improved to six straight wins, while Dynamo was unable to build on Sunday’s success against Kunlun Red Star.
However, the Blue-and-Whites might have enjoyed a happier time if they had managed to convert a slender in-game advantage into a first-period goal. Helped by enjoying the only power play of the opening frame, Dynamo outshot CSKA 15-10 in a fast-paced session. However, there were few clear cut chances on Alexander Sharychenkov’s net in a goalless start.
Early in the second, with the teams playing 4-on-4, CSKA found a cutting edge. Alexander Popov set up a swift counterattack, releasing Andrei Svetlakov into the Dynamo zone. He set up Mikhail Naumenkov for a shot to the roof of the net, giving Ivan Bocharov no chance. Dynamo then ran into penalty trouble and hopes of a recovery founded in the face of a well-drilled CSKA defense. The visitor mustered just three shots in the middle frame.
Midway through the third, the Army Men put the game to bed. Daniil Tarasov’s misplaced pass gave Brendan Leipsic the chance to counter and the Canadian picked out Nikolai Goldobin at the back door to make it 2-0. That was the youngster’s second goal in two games and also his second of the season. With Sharychenkov stopping 28 shots at the other end to record his second shut-out of the season against one of his former clubs, that was enough to put the game beyond Dynamo’s reach.