Category Archives: KHL

KHL 2016-17 Conference Finals Preview

Here we are with only four teams still standing in the KHL’s Gagarin Cup Playoffs!  The Conference Finals get underway on Thursday (West Conference) and Friday (East), so read on for a bit a preview and some predictions.

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A Few News Notes


SKA St. Petersburg players salute the crowd after eliminating Dynamo Moscow. (Image Source)

After a slow blogging week due to general business, this will be a “getting caught up on the KHL story” sort of post.  Read on, for the last four teams standing in the hunt for the Gagarin Cup, the passing of a legend among Russian hockey journalists, and some early news about what the KHL will look like in 2017-18.

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KHL Playoff Update, and Other Matters

A couple of weeks ago here, we discussed Dynamo Moscow defenceman Andrei Kuteikin’s long-range goal against Torpedo in Round 1.  Incredibly, Kuteikin has now pulled the same trick not once, but twice (see video above), in his team’s first three games against SKA St. Petersburg.  Opposing coaches (and goalies) may wish to make a note!  But have those goals done his team any real good?  Read on, for updates on that series and the rest of the KHL’s second round, and a bit of discussion of whatever happened to Ziyat Paigin.

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Checking in With the Lower Leagues


Saryarka Karaganda goalie Denis Peretyagin makes a save against Zvezda Chekhov during Round 1 of the VHL playoffs. (Image Source)

The KHL playoffs’ second round began yesterday, with all series now one game in.  No one was too surprised to see CSKA Moscow and Metallurg Magnitogorsk win their openers, versus Lokomotiv Yaroslavl and Barys Astana respectively, although the Magnitogorsk fans will be hoping that whatever illness kept Sergei Mozyakin out of the lineup today is of short duration.  Ak Bars Kazan, meanwhile, captured home-ice advantage with an opening-game overtime victory over Avangard in Omsk, while Dynamo Moscow provided the big early shock with an overtime win in St. Petersburg against SKA.  3-2 was the final in that one, with Maxim Karpov scoring all three goals for Dynamo.

Our attention this evening, however, is on the post-season happenings in the VHL (previously updated here) and the MHL, the latter of whose regular season just finished up.  Read on!

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2016-17 KHL Playoffs Round 2 Preview: East


Defenceman Atta Ohtamaa and goalie Emil Garipov played important roles in  Ak Bars Kazan achieving the second round.  (Image Source)

Yesterday we took a look at the final four teams of the KHL’s West Conference, so today it is the turn of the East!  Read on, for two teams with nearly identical regular season numbers, a potentially worrying injury development for the defending champions, and an impressive run from the KHL’s Kazakh representatives.

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2016-17 KHL Playoffs Round 2 Preview: West


Pavel Datsyuk celebrates a goal against Vityaz in Round 1.  (Image Source)

Round 1 of the 2016-17 Gagarin Cup playoffs went very much by the form book; all four top seeds won through, and none took more than five games to do it.  But don’t be fooled — there was plenty of drama to be had, as seven of the 18 games played went to overtime, and another three were settled by a single goal or by two including an empty-net tally.  And now we are off to the second round, beginning on Wednesday; read on, as we take a look at the possibilities in the Conference semifinals!

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Guest Post: The KHL and the Champions Hockey League


KHL President Dmitry Chernyshenko.  (Image Source)

Editor’s note: I am very happy to turn the blog over this evening to Tomáš Vorčák (@vorkywh24 on Twitter), who has some thoughts to share on the relationship between the KHL and the Champions Hockey League.  Tomáš is an excellent source of KHL news and information, and I hope that you find his words on the current state of pan-European hockey as interesting as I did.  Read on!

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More Playoffs!


Torpedo Ust-Kamenogorsk (in white) and SKA-Neva St. Petersburg, the top two teams of the VHL regular season, battle each other early in 2016-17.  (Image Source)

It was not only the KHL that set sail into 2016-17’s post-season waters this past week; the second-tier VHL has also embarked on its playoff journey.  Read on, as we take a quick look at that league’s first round, and at a couple of other playoff-related items as well.

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Playoff Update

The first-round KHL playoffs series are all three games in at this point, and as usual some teams have one foot in the second round already while others are facing a lot more hockey before things are settled.  Some firsts and mosts and fastests have cropped up as well in this first post-season week, so read on for a quick look at how each series is going.

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Long Shots

It is, as the old cliché goes, the goalie’s worst nightmare (one of them, anyway) and it came to visit Mikhail Biryukov of Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod on Thursday evening.  With his team in overtime, looking to level their first-round playoff series against Dynamo Moscow at a game apiece, Biryukov utterly failed to deal with a shot by opposing defenseman Andrei Kuteikin — a shot that was unleashed from the far-off realm of centre ice.  It was a Bad Goal, one that the more unimaginative hockey commentators will name “One The Goalie Would Like To Have Back.”  Worse, it gave Dynamo a 3-2 victory in the game, and a 2-0 lead in the series.  Read on, as we travel down memory lane and discover that it was not the first time a Dynamo Moscow rearguard has scored a vital goal in a big game from a different time-zone.

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