Alessandro Seren Rosso Alessandro Seren Rosso
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Metallurg can become the first league’s team to qualify for a postseason spot, but Magnitka has Ak Bars in front in a heated challenge. Six games are on tap on an action-packed KHL Monday.

The battle will be intense on both Eastern and Western front for a postseason qualification – many teams in 6th to 10th place in both Conferences hit the ice today. The KHL matchday starts in the Russian Far East, with Amur hosting SKA, and Admiral welcoming Neftekhimik for a back-to-back game that saw the Sailors prevail on Saturday. The action then moves westwards, with Sibir hosting Avtomobilist. The battle intensifies as Barys faces off with Avtomobilist. Only one point separates the two franchises – but only one will be at the right side of the playoff line after the final hooter. In the meantime, Magnitka will face Ak Bars in Kazan and become the first guaranteed playoff participant of this season. However, they need to earn in the standings more points than Avtomobilist. But since the season is still pretty long, the Ilya Vorobyov’s men won’t certainly face a tragedy should they fail to achieve this result after today’s game.

The playoff battle will be at its peak in the West as well when Torpedo hosts Spartak. Somewhat ironically, Torpedo sports both a better offense and defense than the Muscovites, but they are trailing in the standings by three points. And most importantly, the Red-and-Whites are currently above the postseason line.

12:00: Amur (16-22-6, 10th E) vs SKA (27-9-6, 1st W)

About the game
Amur ends a five-game home series and is on a five-match losing streak.
SKA plays its second road game of a planned four and is on a three-match winning streak.

SKA has already defeated Amur this season (5:2), while the Tigers’ most recent home win against the Army Men dates to the times of the Russian Superleague (3:2, Oct 28, 2007). SKA won its latest 11 games over Amur.

Amur’s forward Alexander Gorshkov is on a three-game scoring streak, with 3 (1+2) points over that span.

SKA’s forward Nikita Gusev is on a three-game scoring streak, with 6 (2+4) points.

Injury list

Amur: Michal Jordan, Gleb Koryagin, Alexander Kuznetsov.

SKA: Stepan Falkovsky, Vasily Tokranov.

Milestone alert

Amur’s defenseman Sergei Tereshchenko may reach 100 KHL points (currently at 99).

12:30: Admiral (11-26-5, 11th E) vs Neftekhimik (18-18-6, 7th E)

About the game

Admiral is at its third of a nine-game home series and defeated Neftekhimik on Saturday.

Neftekhimik is at its sixth of a seven-game road trip and lost its latest game to Admiral.

The Wolves have already defeated Admiral twice this season (4:0, 5:2) and lost once (2:3 SO).

Neftekhimik’s forward Dan Sexton is on a three-game scoring streak, with 3 (1+2) points over that span.

Injury list

Admiral: Rihards Bukarts, Evgeny Grachyov.

Neftekhimik: Alexei Puzanov.

15:30: Sibir (22-16-4, 6th E) vs Salavat Yulaev (26-12-4, 3rd E)

About the game

Sibir plays its fifth of an eight-game home series and lost to SKA on Saturday.

Salavat Yulaev starts a two-game road trip fresh off a win over Avtomobilist also on Saturday.

Sibir has already defeated Salavat Yulaev this season (3:1), but lost its previous three home games to Ufa, all with an identical 1:3 score.

Salavat Yulaev’s forward Sakari Manninen is on a five-game scoring streak, with 7 (4+3) points over that span.

His teammate, forward Viktor Tikhonov, is on a six-game scoring streak, with 8 (1+7) points.

Injury list

Sibir: Trevor Murphy.

Milestone alert

Salavat Yulaev’s defenseman Grigory Panin lines up for his 700th KHL game.

Salavat Yulaev’s forward Alexander Kadeikin may score his 200th career point (currently at 198).

16:30: Barys (18-20-4, 8th E) vs Avtomobilist (17-20-5, 9th E)

About the game

Barys starts a four-game home series and suffered from two consecutive losses most recently.

Avtomobilist ends a three-game road trip and lost its previous four matches.

Barys has already defeated Avtomobilist twice this season (5:4 OT, 2:0).

Injury list

Barys: Arkady Shestakov.

Avtomobilist: Alexei Makeyev.

19:00: Ak Bars (25-11-6, 4th E) vs Metallurg (32-9-1, 1st E)

About the game

Ak Bars ends a seven-game home series and lost to Severstal on Saturday.

Metallurg plays its third of a six-game road trip and defeated Vityaz also on Saturday.

Metallurg has already defeated Ak Bars three time this season (3:1, 2:1, 3:1), and may automatically qualify for postseason should they get more points than Avtomobilist from tonight’s games.

Ak Bars’ forward Dmitry Kagarlitsky is on a six-game scoring streak, with 9 (1+8) points over that span.

His teammate, defenseman Steven Kampfer, is on a five-game scoring streak, with 8 (3+5) points.

Injury list

Ak Bars: Alexander Burmistrov, Dmitry Voronkov.

Metallurg: Grigory Dronov, Mikhail Pashnin.

Milestone alert

Ak Bars’ goalie Igor Bobkov may record his 30th career shutout.

Ak Bars’ forward Artyom Lukoyanov may reach 100 career assists (currently at 99).

Metallurg’s forward Anatoly Nikontsev may reach his 100th KHL assist (currently at 99).

Metallurg’s defenseman Linus Hultstrom lines up for his 100th KHL game tonight.

19:00: Torpedo (20-16-6, 9th W) vs Spartak (23-17-3, 7th W)

About the game

Torpedo starts a two-game home series after losing to Dynamo Moscow on Saturday.

Spartak plays the second of a seven-match road trip, is on a two-game winning streak, and has already defeated Torpedo this season (5:3).

Torpedo’s goalie Alexei Murygin is on a 95:02 shutout streak.

Torpedo’s forward Damir Zhafyarov is on a nine-game scoring streak, with 13 (4+9) points over that span.

Torpedo’s forward Kenny Agostino is on a six-game scoring streak, with 10 (3+7) points.

Torpedo’s forward Andy Miele is on a seven-game scoring streak, with 10 (6+4) points.

Spartak’s forward Alexander Khokhlachyov is on a four-game scoring streak, with 4 (1+3) points.

Injury list

Torpedo: Daniel Zaar.

Spartak: Dmitry Kugryshev, Andrei Loktionov.

Alessandro Seren Rosso Alessandro Seren Rosso
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Avtomobilist (Ekaterinburg) Avtomobilist (Ekaterinburg)
Admiral (Vladivostok) Admiral (Vladivostok)
Ak Bars (Kazan) Ak Bars (Kazan)
Amur (Khabarovsk) Amur (Khabarovsk)
Barys (Nur-Sultan) Barys (Nur-Sultan)
Metallurg (Magnitogorsk) Metallurg (Magnitogorsk)
Neftekhimik (Nizhnekamsk) Neftekhimik (Nizhnekamsk)
Salavat Yulaev (Ufa) Salavat Yulaev (Ufa)
Sibir (Novosibirsk Region) Sibir (Novosibirsk Region)
SKA (Saint Petersburg) SKA (Saint Petersburg)
Spartak (Moscow) Spartak (Moscow)
Torpedo (Nizhny Novgorod) Torpedo (Nizhny Novgorod)
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