KHL Game Day Round-Up | October 3, 2022

Three games, one scoreline.

All three of Monday’s KHL games with the same scoreline, and each visiting team left with a 3-2 overtime verdict. SKA needed a late goal from Marat Khairullin to complete its fightback at CSKA, before Maxim Groshev decided the day’s big game. Earlier, Dynamo Moscow won at Kunlun Red Star thanks to a Dmitry Rashevsky penalty shot in the extras. Dinamo Minsk snapped its four-game losing streak thanks to Joseph Duszak’s first goal of the season at Torpedo.

Dynamo subdues spirited Dragons

Kunlun Red Star 2 Dynamo Moscow 3 OT (0-0, 0-0, 2-2, 0-1)

Dynamo extended its winning streak to six games, but had to dig deep to overcome a spirited Kunlun team.

The host named an unchanged line-up after defeating CSKA in overtime on Saturday – and came close to repeating that result against the defending champion’s cross-town rival. Dynamo had the better of the first two periods but was unable to turn its supremacy into goals. Then, in the third period, the teams traded four goals.

Dynamo got the first early in the session when Andrei Mironov fired home. The game produced few penalties, but Kunlun’s second power play of the game saw captain Brandon Yip tie it up on 54 minutes. Parity lasted just 49 seconds until Jordan Weal restored the visitor’s advantage.

However, the 2022-2023 KRS roster has a ‘zero quit’ mentality. Against CSKA it tied the game with two goals in the last five minutes; today it forced overtime when Kyle Wood scored with two minutes left to play.

In the extras, though, the Dragons’ wings were clipped. Red Star seemed to be in prime position to get the win when Weal was called for interference in the final minute. However, the power play did not come off and a Dynamo breakaway ended with Parker Foo fouling an opponent on his way to goal. Dmitry Rashevsky dispatched the penalty shot on 64:59 to give the Blue-and-Whites the win.

Duszak ends Minsk’s skid

Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod 2 Dinamo Minsk 3 OT (0-1, 2-0, 0-1, 0-1)

Dinamo snapped its four-game losing streak with an overtime victory at Torpedo. Joseph Duszak potted his first goal in the KHL to settle the outcome, sending the host spinning to a second successive loss.

The visitor’s recent form was not impressive, culminating in a 1-5 loss at home to SKA on Saturday. However, Craig Woodcroft’s team was determined to make amends and produced a strong performance in the first period here. Pavel Varfolomeyev’s goal was the only tangible reward, but the Bison could take confidence from the way they dominated the early exchanges.

However, Igor Larionov’s Torpedo is not a team that is prepared to roll over. The philosophy is one of attacking hockey and in the second stanza that yielded two goals as the home team turned the game around. Both goals came on the power play, with Maxim Fedotov tying it up during a passage of 4-on-3 play early in the session. Then Denis Yan punished Dmitry Korobov’s tripping penalty with the go-ahead goal on 35 minutes.

The momentum had shifted and with Torpedo starting the third period on another power play, it felt like the game was there for the home team’s taking. However, Dinamo dug in. Midway through the session, Cedric Paquette tied it up and both sides cautiously played out the remainder of regulation. The extras lasted just 75 seconds before Duszak got the winner on a goal that passed a video check for offside before it could be confirmed.

SKA fights back to sink defending champ

CSKA Moscow 2 SKA St. Petersburg 3 OT (1-0, 1-1, 0-1, 0-1)

This was a clash of the titans. Champion CSKA faced SKA, a team determined to prove its own championship credentials after a flying start to the season. The visitor, beaten only once this season prior to tonight, was arguably the favorite going into a game against a Muscovite team in unconvincing form. However, SKA had to rally from 0-2 to force overtime before Maxim Groshev sealed the victory.

Given CSKA’s recent worries, it was little surprise that SKA created the first chance of the game. Andrei Pedan’s shot bounced temptingly back across the slot, but Alexander Volkov was unable to take advantage in the third minute. Next, the home team had to kill a penalty after Sergei Plotnikov’s foul.

Back at full strength, the home team grew into the game. The first CSKA power play brought the opening goal in the eighth minute. Plotnikov fed the puck out to the left where Konstantin Okulov had space to step up and launch a powerful shot that flew past Dmitry Nikolayev in the SKA net. Pavel Karnaukhov’s presence on the slot obscured the goalie’s view of the action.

Almost immediately, Nikolayev made a smart save to deny Vitaly Abramov as the home team looked to build on its advantage. The host continued to enjoy the better of the first period, but could not add to its lead.

In the second frame, another power play brought another CSKA goal. This time the home team set itself up in the O-zone and Okulov turned provider with a pass for Nikita Nesterov to fire home from the blue line. However, in the final minute of the period, Daniil Pylenkov’s one-timer got SKA on the board and set up an intriguing finish.

The third period was an even battle, but the big moment came after 55 minutes. Damir Zhafyarov dished off a pass for Khairullin and SKA’s leading scorer unleashed a powerful shot that found the top corner. At first the officials thought the puck rebounded off the crossbar, but the replay made it clear that it crossed the goal line.

That brought overtime. CSKA, as usual, withdrew goalie Adam Reideborn in favor of an extra attacker. It almost paid off. Twice, Mikhail Grigorenko hammered in slapshots. The first whistled over the top, and the second clipped the crossbar before dropping to safety. Then, at the other end, SKA grabbed the win when Maxim Groshev won a puck battle with Okulov and slid the puck into the empty net.


KHL Game Day Round-Up | October 2, 2022

Salavat Yulaev blanks red-hot offense, Dynamo wins again.

A 4-0 win at Avtomobilist saw one of the KHL’s top scoring teams fail to score as Salavat Yulaev pulled off a big result on the road. Dynamo Moscow posted a fifth straight win after edging Severstal 4-3. There were plenty of goals in Kazakhstan, where Barys got an overtime verdict after a 4-4 tie with Sochi. Vityaz also hit five at Spartak and Neftekhimik got a third straight win as Traktor continues to stumble.

Vey settles thriller in Kazakhstan

Barys Nur-Sultan 5 HC Sochi 4 OT (0-2, 3-2, 1-0, 1-0)

Sochi snapped its long losing streak with a 3-1 win over Dinamo Minsk last time out, but the Leopards were unable to build on that in Kazakhstan. The visitor blew a 2-0 lead and fell in overtime.

The Black Sea team made a good start, with Nikita Zorkin opening the scoring just as the game’s first power play came to an end. Nikita Pivtsakin doubled that lead in the 16th minute and Sochi looked to be in control after a competitive opening stanza.

However, discipline let Andrei Nazarov’s team down in the second period. Unnecessary penalties early in the session helped Anton Sagadeyev and Jeremy Bracco tie the scores. Midway through the game, another power play helped Anthony Louis make it 3-2 for the home team.

Behind for the first time, Sochi hit back immediately. Nikita Popugayev tied the game, then restored the Leopard’s lead on 38:09.

That double turned the game around, but it was upstaged by Linden Vey. He did the same thing, tying the scores in the third before grabbing a winner in overtime to leave Sochi at the foot of the standings while Barys consolidates its position in the playoff places.

Kareyev blanks KHL’s top offense

Avtomobilist Yekaterinburg 0 Salavat Yulaev Ufa 4 (0-0, 0-1, 0-3)

Avtomobilist came into this game as the KHL’s joint leading scorer with 47 goals. However, Andrei Kareyev blanked that potent offense as Salavat Yulaev recorded an impressive victory.

The home team was hit by news of an injury to center Stephane Da Costa. He was replaced by Danil Romantsev on the first line. Ufa welcomed back Ryan Murphy after suspension.

In the early stages, Curtis Valk’s line was the most threatening for the home team, although in truth scoring chances were hard to come by. The visitor did not manage a shot on goal until the 11th minute but neither team could break the deadlock in the first period.

Late in the frame, a double minor for Alexander Kadeikin invited Avtomobilist to step up the tempo. However, Kareyev repelled a flurry of shots on his net and at the other end Ivan Drozdov came close to stealing a short-handed goal.

After the intermission, Salavat emerged with renewed purpose. That extra energy won a power play and despite spending 90 seconds making little impression on the home defense, the first meaningful shot of the PP saw Mikhail Naumenkov open the scoring.

For the first time this season, Avtomobilist found itself needing to turn around a home game in the third period. However, instead of pressuring the visitor, the Motormen found themselves reduced to three skaters. Salavat Yulaev could not take advantage, and Kadeikin carelessly found himself back in the box to dilute that two-man PP. It wasn’t until everyone was back at full strength that Stanislav Bocharov, rested during the PK, returned to the game and got away from the defense to score on his former team.

Within a minute, a difficult situation for Avto became almost impossible when Ufa’s line of rising stars created a chance for Alexei Pustozyorov to make it 3-0. Bocharov put his second into an empty net to seal the win, Kareyev’s 31 saves left the home team frustrated.

Neftekhimik continues to rise

Traktor Chelyabinsk 1 Neftekhimik Nizhnekamsk 2 (0-0, 0-2, 1-0)

Neftekhimik’s improvement continues with a third successive victory, but Traktor’s stuttering start to the season is becoming a cause for increasing concern. Today’s loss was all the more painful considering that the visiting goalie, Emil Garipov, recently swapped Chelyabinsk for Nizhnekamsk.

This was the third meeting between the teams. The first two went decisively to Traktor, but that was during Neftekhimik’s painful start to the campaign. Now the visitor is showing signs of recovery and Traktor contributed to its problems with a lackluster start. For seven minutes, the home team was unable to muster a shot at goal and throughout the first period chances were at a premium.

In the middle frame, Neftekhimik got in front. However, the opening goal had to wait until the 37th minute before Pavel Poryadin finished off a well-worked play. That extended his goal streak to four games. Before the intermission, the visitor doubled the lead through Andrei Chivilyov.

Only in the third did Traktor manage to seriously pressure Garipov. Vladimir Tkachyov set up Ilya Karpukhin for a 48th-minute goal that gave his team hope of saving the game, but Garipov stood firm with some solid defense in front of him.

Rashevsky’s double gives Dynamo the edge

Dynamo Moscow 4 Severstal Cherepovets 3 (1-0, 2-2, 1-1)

In recent seasons, these two teams have been playoff opponents. The last series went to game seven and today’s regular season encounter also ended 4-3. Two goals from Dmitry Rashevsky, and a first of the season for Brennan Menell helped the Blue-and-White to a narrow victory.

In an even first period, the only goal came in the 13th minute. Maxim Dzhioshvili was the scorer, producing a replica of his marker in Cherepovets earlier in the season. Dynamo held that lead until the intermission, and Rashevsky’s snipe extended the advantage in the second.

Then Severstal began its fightback. Daniil Vovchenko pulled a goal back before the middle frame finished a rush of action. Severstal took a bench minor on 37:14, and it took just four seconds for Menell to convert the power play. On 37:30, though, Dynamo was left short-handed and, 13 seconds later Alexander Suvorov made it 3-2.

Early in the third period, the Steelmen tied the game when Ruslan Abrosimov scored a power play goal. However, Rashevsky’s second of the afternoon decided the outcome of an entertaining encounter.

Dorozhko denies Spartak

Spartak Moscow 1 Vityaz Moscow Region 5 (0-1, 0-2, 1-2)

This was a day to remember for Vityaz, and definitely one for Spartak to forget. The visitor arrived on the back of two straight wins and produced a performance that banished memories of its recent six-game losing streak.

Unusually, given the lopsided final score, it was goalie Maxim Dorozhko who earned plenty of plaudits. He made 40 saves to frustrate the home team. At the other end, Vityaz was clinical with its chances, scoring regularly throughout the game.

Vityaz killed two penalties before taking the lead in the first period through Ivan Zinchenko. That pattern played out again in the second, with the Red-and-Whites again failing to convert a power play before Yegor Voronkov doubled the lead. When Scott Wilson deftly redirected an airborne puck into the net for 3-0, it was clear that this would not be Spartak’s day.

The home team got on the scoresheet at last in the 47th minute thanks to Matvei Zaseda. At last, the Spartak power play delivered, but it was too late to save the game. Instead, Vityaz added two more goals through Stepan Starkov and Stanislav Yarovoi, the latter scoring his first goal in the KHL after getting a shoot-out winner against Admiral in his previous game.