In the regular championship of the Fonbet Kontinental Hockey League, the second derby between the Moscow and St. Petersburg army teams took place. This time they met on the banks of the Neva, but their confrontation ended again in favor of SKA - 2:1. The St. Petersburgers have already won their sixth victory in a row.
SKA and CSKA approached the second army derby with equal results, gaining 36 points in 31 matches. At the same time, St. Petersburg residents were in fifth place, and Muscovites were in sixth place. Slowly but surely, the main favorites of the Western Conference are improving their standings after a frankly sluggish start to the current regular season. Although they are still quite far from their usual leading positions, given that Spartak, which is in first place, has 49 points, and Dynamo Moscow, which is in second, has 45. But Lokomotiv and Torpedo have already found themselves within sight.
SKA has recently gone on a five-game winning streak. CSKA, in turn, won three matches in a row - however, against clubs that are currently not in the play-off zone, and without championship shine, by one or two goals. So, based on these results, it was difficult to say whether the Muscovites had definitely overcome stagnation in the game.
In the first derby in Moscow, CSKA lost 2:3, despite taking the lead twice. The match in St. Petersburg followed a different scenario.
The Muscovites seemed to start it energetically and at least did not allow SKA to get close to their own goal, which was defended by Ivan Fedotov. The teams demonstrated fairly closed hockey, with no obvious opportunities to score, but towards the end of the first period, the seemingly solid playing model of the guests suddenly became upset.
It seems that they got hooked after a protracted attack in their zone, when only the hosts’ striker Marat Khairullin could hit the target three times. Then CSKA pulled Fedotov. He also neutralized a dangerous breakthrough along the left flank of Vasily Glotov. But the field players did not take the puck over the blue line, Vladimir Alistrov intercepted it and gave it to the same Glotov, who threw it from under defender Yaroslav Dyblenko and landed in the top corner. Despite the fact that there were five minutes left before the break, the capital's army team did not respond to the missed goal.
It is interesting that in the debut of the second period, Glotov had a great understanding of the defense and saved the team by removing the puck from the hook of CSKA forward Andrei Svetlakov, who was standing under the goal. Nevertheless, the Muscovites clearly cheered up and earned a penalty, and Mikhail Grigorenko almost converted it, putting his stick under Nikita Nesterov’s flick. SKA goalkeeper Nikita Serebryakov was helped by the bar. And as soon as the St. Petersburg team fought back in the minority, Andrei Chivilev, who was fined, scored. Alistrov took advantage of a mistake by defender Fredrik Claesson and made the second scoring pass of the match. Moreover, in that episode, in addition to the Swedish legionnaire CSKA, Fedotov also acted in an uncool way, opening the near corner.
However, the guests soon had a good chance to return to the game. Valentin Zykov hit Prokhor Poltapov too hard on the board and received a large fine plus a disciplinary one for the rest of the meeting.
Everything was in the hands of the Muscovites, but in five minutes in the five-on-four format they couldn’t even really load Serebryakov.
The majority didn’t work for them even later, when Alexander Galchenyuk sat on the penalty box for SKA. On top of that, Grigorenko did not use the two-on-one exit after Poltapov’s pass. Although Serebryakov reacted simply brilliantly there.
In the third period, CSKA tried to increase the pressure on his goal, but Nesterov’s violation in the opponent’s zone knocked Sergei Fedorov’s team out of rhythm. She had to fight for the initiative again and waste precious time on this, while the St. Petersburgers competently killed him. The guests still managed to strain Serebryakov after another SKA sending-off, but he coped with the threats, and Vladislav Kamenev and Maxim Sorkin threw to him from lethal distances. In the end, the Moscow army team once again gained a numerical advantage, replaced Fedotov with a sixth player and finally pushed the puck into the net through the efforts of Maxim Mamin. Then they removed the goalkeeper again, but it was no longer possible to play too much in a six-on-five situation.
Thus, SKA prevailed 2:1, extending the winning streak to six matches.
With 38 points, Roman Rotenberg's team is still fifth in the West. Lokomotiv now has 40 points, but Torpedo has moved up to third place with 42 points. The Nizhny Novgorod team defeated Barys at home - 4:2.
Meanwhile, in the East, conference leader Metallurg beat Sibir at home - 4:1, and now has 48 points. Lada scored 44 points, defeating Dynamo Minsk on their site - 3:1. The Tolyatti team are in third place, but have reduced the gap from second-placed Avangard to one point. At the same time, the Omsk team played two fewer matches, and they are the leaders of the Eastern Conference in terms of lost points. Let us note that the “hawks” have won nine victories in a row, but in the near future they will face two difficult trips - to Chelyabinsk to “Traktor” and to Ufa to “Salavat Yulaev”.