Sergei Mozyakin collected his 950th career point to help Magnitka claims its 4th successive win – but after a blistering start the home team almost allowed Sibir back into the game.
Mozyakin’s big moment came in the seventh minute with an assist on Denis Kazionov’s goal. The home captain released Chris Lee as the defenseman broke into the Sibir zone and found Kazionov for a one-timer to make it 3-0.
That was the first goal past Alexei Krasikov, who was brought into the game in the third minute after Danny Taylor suffered a horrible start to the evening. After 93 seconds he was deceived by Vladislav Kaletnik’s feint and was left clutching at thin air as Evgeny Timkin opened the scoring. Then on 2:31 Danis Zaripov fed Evgeny Biryukov for a one-timer that ended the goalie’s game almost before it began.
But Sibir refused to buckle despite coming into the game on a miserable run of six defeats in seven outings. Nikolai Glukhov got one back on the power play early in the second period and Artyom Voroshilo capitalized on a defensive error to make it 3-2 in the 39th minute. Sibir continued to push hard in the third, but Magnitka held on to return to the top of the Eastern Conference.
Salavat Yulaev Ufa 4 Metallurg Novokuznetsk 3
This time last year Kirill Kaprizov was being widely touted as the next star player to emerge from the Novokuznetsk hockey school. Twelve months on, having moved to Ufa, he showed his old teachers how much he learned with a three-point game to give his new club the victory. Kaprizov opened the scoring in the 17th minute, but then saw his former team-mates turn the game around with second-period goals from Evgeny Solovyov and Evgeny Viksna.
Salavat hit back quickly, though. Denis Kulyash got an unassisted equalizer during a passage of 4-on-4 play before Kaprizov had an assist on Linus Omark’s effort 90 seconds later to make it 3-2.
Kirill Semyonov tied it up once again early in the third, but Kaprizov fed Sami Lepisto for the game-winner.
Dynamo Moskow 3 Jokerit Helsinki 0
Dynamo lost goalie Alexander Yeryomenko to injury during Wednesday’s shoot-out win over Dinamo Riga – but stand-in Alexander Lazushin had a fine game, making 28 saves for a shut-out against the Finns.
That helped the Blue-and-Whites to claim an important victory as Sergei Oreshkin’s team looks to steer clear of the dogfight to secure a top-eight finish in the West this season, but the 3-0 margin did not entirely reflect a game in which Dynamo only really took control in the closing stages.
After a scoreless opening stanza, Juuso Heitanen put the home team in front in the 24th minute but there was still little to choose between the teams in terms of possession and chances.
Jokerit began to dominate in the final session, seeking that tying goal, only to be caught out by some slick passing among Martins Karsums and Alexei Tsvetkov that led to Ansel Galimov doubling the lead. Lukas Kaspar fired a third into the empty net to secure the victory.
Around the league
Vityaz edged Dinamo Riga by the odd goal in five to move level with eighth-placed Jokerit in the race for the Western Conference playoffs. The game featured two short-handed goals, first from Nikita Vyglazov to put Vityaz ahead, then from Gints Meija to reduce Riga’s deficit after Alexei Kopeikin got the home team’s second. But that penalty also saw Miro Aaltonen make it 3-1 for Vityaz and Pyotr Schastlivy’s third-period goal for Dinamo was not enough to make his team happy at the final hooter.
In-form Traktor made it five wins from six after coming from behind at home to Avangard. Jonas Ahnelov opened the scoring for the visitor in the 23rd minute before Dmitry Pestunov tied it up on the power play late in the second period. Another power play effort, this time from Artyom Borodkin, gave Traktor the lead early in the third and Nikolai Belov found the empty net to make the final score 3-1.