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Jokerit came in to Sunday’s game being second in the Western Conference. Dinamo on the other hand were in 10th place, two points away from the playoff spot. The teams faced each other the first time in this season. The Helsinki team had won both preseason games against Dinamo.

All games combined, Dinamo had won Jokerit last time in February 2019. Sunday’s home team had won nine games since.

Both teams had lost two of their most recent games, netting one point in total. Jokerit and Dinamo were thus both looking for getting back on winning.

Jokerit got the game to their hands right from the get-go and they dominatoed the events on the ice throughout the match. Dinamo didn’t show much of a challenge for the Helsinki team. The end result was 8–0 in favor of Jokerit.

”This was a stylish and calm performance from the beginning to the very end. We showed commitment. Against Metallurg we played well for 54 minutes and allowed four goals in seven minutes. We need to play till the buzzer. We were efficient and it felt that the pucks found their way to the net. We found our calmness in our offensive game. It was good to have six thousand spectators in the afternoon, because they make the game what it is. The next games will be on tour. I hope we keep playing this way, when we come back”, said Jokerit head coach Lauri Marjamäki.

”We played well and didn’t give them much. We shut them down and had a good team win. Every team can beat each other in the KHL. We just stayed on the gas pedal. It’s huge to keep that mindset. Situation like this can be difficult. We talked about it on second intermission, that we need to shut them down. In Magnitogorsk the opponent came back and we learned from that”, Jordan Schroeder, the scorer of four goals thought.

Dinamo didn’t get anything done

Jokerit got their first chance on power play right in the first moments of the game as Rudolf Cerveny was sent to the penalty box. Nicklas Jensen was eager to shoot the puck on man-advantage, but Dinamo’s goaltender Johan Mattson got a good start to the game with a few focused saves. Eventually, when the teams got back to full strenght, Jokerit capitalized. Veli-Matti Savinainen was in the right place to put a rebound into the net.

The first minutes of the game were pretty unstable, as both teams received minor penalties. It took quite a while to see, which team would take the puck-control. Jokerit managed to maintain calm and wait the events on the ice to stabilize. Anders Lindbäck didn’t have to make a single save before Jokerit lead the game 2–0. Schroeder scored his first of the night in his return game.

After Jokerit doubled their lead, they got even clearer control of the game comparing to what had been before. The Swedishman Mattson was the key individual to allow th visitors to stay within the reach in score. But Mattson was still only one human being, as Jokerit kept the attacks coming. Defenceman David Sklenicka put the home team already up by three goals.

Dinamo had crucial difficulties in many fields of the game. For example giving the first opening pass seemed to be a mission impossible for the Latvian team. Apart from the few very first shifts of the first period, Dinamo was a complete passant on the ice.

Jokerit did whatever they wanted

The same kind of game continued in the second period as Jokerit stayed in the puck and held the possession mostly in the offensive zone. Dinamo’s efforts to keep their game going became unsuccessful many times, when the players weren’t able to receive the passes properly in the neutral zone, in order to take the puck towards Lindbäck.

Savinainen kept playing well throughout the game, giving Dinamo’s defence some hard times with his physical presence. Dinamo also tried to get things going with some hits to the end boards. The visitors weren’t however able to shake Jokerit up.

Jokerit got to 4–0 lead with a goal scored by defenceman Tommi Kivistö, who shot the puck with a slapshot from the blueline. The goal was under a review for a long time as the referees checked, if there had been an offside just before the goal came. Because Dinamo failed in their coaches challenge, they had to send a player to the penalty box. Schroeder scored from the net, making the score 5–0.

Savinainen and Dinamo’s Karlis Cukste were sent to the penalty box shortly after the goal as they had a little brawl at the visitor’s net. As Savinainen also received a minor penalty from interference, did Dinamo get a chance on power play. However, Lindbäck got to remain in his own peace. Some time after Dinamo’s opportunity of getting their scoring going, did Jokerit create already their sixth goal – Schroeder scored once again, compelting his hat trick. Kalle Kossila got his turn to chip the puck in on the seventh goal.

Dinamo got another chance on power play for the last minutes of the second period. A few times the visitors got the puck deep into Jokerit zone, but still Dinamo weren’t even close of scoring their first of the game.

Playing the time away

In the beginning of the last period Jokerit gave the puck control slightly to Dinamo. The Latvian team got the opportunity to create a few situations, but still the home team was able to forecheck the puck away from Dinamo and keep the pace as they liked. Henri Ikonen had a chance, but his shot went a little wide.

Dinamo chanced their goaltender in the end of the second period. Mattson gave his position to Ericks Vitols. The young Latvian didn’t have to make big saves in his first minutes on the ice, because Dinamo was able to keep the puck along the boards. When Dinamo got yet another power play chance, Lauris Darzins got to try scoring – Lindbäck had kept himself warm and stopped the puck rather easily.

The third period went along in harmony, as neither of the teams had too much hunger left to argue about the result of the game. Dinamo’s goaltender Vitols showed promising performance, even though the score was already settled.

Schroeder made his efficient game even better as he did swing his fourth goal to the net, making Vitols surrender the first time in the game.

Going to an exotic away tour

Jokerit put up a dominant performance, making Dinamo look like a very lousy team. The Helsinki team got success in many aspects of the game.

The Helsinki team will continue their season next week, as they head to an away tour to the east coast of Russia – playing against Amur and Admiral.

”In the early season we didn’t get our first line to work, but now Jordan was successful. It’s very important for us. We knew that this tour would be there. It’s not optimal, but if a player is good enough, he’ll play well at 3AM. As we come back from Novosibirsk to Astana, the clock will be favorable for us”, Marjamäki said.

On the player’s side playing in the middle of the night didn’t get big support. As Schroeder jokingly said, he would maybe wake up at six.

”It’s never easy especially with the travelling and early games. We need to keep focusing mentally and make sure that our body is ready”, the four-goal man concluded.           

 

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Dinamo (Riga) Dinamo (Riga)
Jokerit (Helsinki) Jokerit (Helsinki)
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