The Sailors claimed a notable victory over table-topping SKA. Tuesday’s success was the club’s first victory over its Petersburg rival since 2014. It moved Leonids Tambijevs’ team up to fourth in the Eastern Conference, and extended the club’s current streak to 10 games with at least one point.
SKA was looking for its 10th successive victory, and welcomed back Matvei Michkov after injury. The visitor made a lively start, taking the early initiative but struggling to get good looks at Nikita Serebryakov’s net. Admiral was forced to defend carefully, yet a rare counterattack gave the home team the opening goal in the 17th minute. An odd man rush ended with Dmitry Sayustov firing into an open net. That’s Sayustov’s 42nd goal for the club, bringing him level with Niclas Bergfors in the all-time Admiral goal chart.
Stats suggest that no team is stronger than SKA in the second period this season. This time, the visitor was boosted by a couple of power plays early in the middle frame, but was unable to convert them into goals. As in the first session, Admiral bided its time and waited for a chance to counter. And, as in the first session, the plan worked. As the clock ran down, SKA’s play lost a bit of zip and the Sailors profited thanks to Ivan Yemets’ first goal of the season. The visitor challenged the play, citing interference on goalie Alexander Samonov, but the video review awarded the goal and handed SKA a bench minor.
In the final frame, SKA got on the scoreboard at last. Nikita Gusev reduced the deficit with six minutes to play. However, his second goal since returning to the club last week was not enough to start a recovery. Instead, Rudolf Cerveny scored into an empty net to seal a 3-1 win for the home team and condemn the league leader to only its third loss of the season.
In recent years, Dynamo has enjoyed its Far East tours. Not this time, though. The previous game brought a first ever loss in Vladivostok and today there was another 1-2 reverse at Amur. Previously, the Blue-and-Whites were unbeaten here since Jan. 2010.
The home team looked good in the first period, even though fortune was against the Tigers. Artyom Alyayev had the puck in Dynamo’s net during a 5-on-3 power play, but a bench challenge from the visitor saw the play called back for interference on goalie Konstantin Volkov. Shortly before the intermission, the Blue-and-Whites made the most of that reprieve when Dmitry Rashevsky fired a powerful effort past Janis Kalnins to open the scoring.
After that, though, Amur redoubled its efforts. Two quick goals in the second period turned the game around. Sergei Lapin tied it up with a goal on the wraparound. That was Lapin’s first KHL goal for four years, and his first for Amur. Denis Vikharev followed up with his first Amur goal, shooting home after Jan Drozg forced won back possession in the Dynamo zone. The Slovenian international marked his KHL debut with an assist.
Those two quick goals forced Dynamo to raise its game. An injury to Amur’s starting goalie Kalnins brought Evgeny Alikin to the crease, but he continued the good work of his predecessor. Between them, the two goalies stopped 31 shots as Amur closed out a memorable win.
Barys missed the chance to draw level with eighth-placed Traktor, losing out in a hard-fought game at home to Vityaz. The visitor remains sixth in the west, but opened a five-point gap to Spartak in ninth.
Since an injury to Nikita Mikhailis on Oct. 21, Barys has struggled for form. Andrei Skabelka’s team has lost five of its last six to drop out of the playoff places. Against an unpredictable Vityaz team, the host looked for an aggressive start and might have gone ahead when Michael Chaput tested Maxim Dorozhko in the visitor’s net.
However, after weathering that early storm, Vityaz began to press its host. Barys stumbled into penalty trouble once again and Vladislav Kara opened the scoring off Alexander Yaremchuk’s feed. That prompted a spell of Vityaz pressure that could easily have brought more goals before Barys regained some control of the game.
The home team began the second period on the power play, and 19-year-old prospect Dinmukhamed Kaiyrzhan had a great chance to tie the game, only to fluff his shot at the crucial moment. That turned out to be the clearest opportunity of the middle frame as neither team played with much urgency.
When Kara got his second early in the third period, that looked like it would put the result beyond doubt. Instead, it ushered in a Barys renaissance. Arkady Shestakov pulled a goal back almost immediately and the home team suddenly looked capable of saving the game. Vityaz responded with a fine goal from Yaremchuk to restore its two-goal advantage but the visitor could not relax. Five minutes from the end, young Kaiyrzhan scored from a one-on-one break to set up a storming finish. However, Vityaz held on to take the win.
Avtomobilist scored 90 seconds from the end to force overtime at Severstal, before Brooks Macek’s second of the game snatched the win.
Goals were a long time in coming here. For two full periods the teams were unable to find the net. Between them, Dmitry Shugayev and Vladimir Galkin stopped 34 shots in the opening 40 minutes, with Severstal’s Shugayev the busier of the two.
Early in the third, though, the hoodoo was broken. Suddenly, the teams traded three goals in 2:40. David Dumbadze twice put Severstal ahead, Stephane Da Costa’s goal for Avtomobilist was sandwiched between them.
Dumbadze’s second goal was only awarded after a video review confirmed that there was no high stick on the play. For a time, it looked like it would also be the winner. The Steelmen were defending valiantly and Avto was unable to generate the kind of offense we saw earlier in the game. However, just 15 seconds after the visitor replaced Galkin with a sixth skater it got a tying goal. Denis Barantsev’s powerful shot from the left-hand circle bounced around the crease and Macek reacted fastest to stick it in the net.
And it was Macek who wrapped it up in overtime. His second of the night came on the power play, slamming home a feed from Da Costa to give Avto a second victory in three games.
Just over a week ago, Ak Bars’ 5-2 win over Neftekhimik snapped a long losing streak. Since then, Oleg Znarok’s team picked up a further five points from its next three games, suggesting that at least some of the problems in Kazan were starting to ease.
However, a ‘glass half empty’ view would point to all of those games going to overtime. That hints at an Ak Bars team some way short of its best. Today, once again, the game went beyond 60 minutes – and Neftekhimik avenged its defeat at the end of last month.
The teams traded goals throughout the game. Neftekhimik made a fast start, opening the scoring in the second minute through Vyacheslav Leshchenko. However, Alexander Radulov tied it up five minutes later. Much has been written about Radulov’s contribution and state of mind in Kazan. However, after failing to score since Oct. 4, he now has two goals in two games.
After impressing on the PK, the visitor then got ahead on the power play. Midway through the third period, with Neftekhimik reduced to three skaters, Stanislav Galiyev converted Vadim Shipachyov’s feed to put Ak Bars in front for the first time in the game.
In the past, it’s hard to imagine Ak Bars letting that position slip away. But this season the aura of invulnerability around the team has dissipated. And so Neftekhimik was able to tie it up once again with five minutes to play when Andrei Chivilyov scored a peach of a solo effort on Amir Miftakhov.
That goal took the game to overtime, and Neftekhimik finished the job in the extras. It took almost the full five minutes to produce a winner, but Pavel Poryadin’s stretch pass exposed Miftakhov in the visitor’s net and Evgeny Mityakin was on hand to take full advantage with the winning goal in this Tatarstan derby.