Belousov’s record and a win over the champion

Goaltender Aleksandr Danilishin, defender Aleksandr Shinin and forward Aleksandr Suglobov found themselves in the starting line-up. In fact, it was Danilishin’s first appearance in the KHL game line-up since September 15, 2010 when he was a substitute goalie for Sebastien Caron. Aleksandr Shinin also appeared after missing a huge amount of matches, taking his place in the third line and pairing up with Yevgeny Katichev. Konstantin Panov was moved back to the right wing of the second line while Karpov moved to the fourth line to play along with Suglobov and Sayustov. Gennady Razin and Vladislav Fokin missed the game due to injuries.

First period

The match began with Yakutsenya’s shot to the upper corner, but Yeremenko saved his goal on that exchange. Four minutes into the game Shafigulin tried to catch Garnett off guard, but to no avail. Two minutes later Traktor got the power play which quickly turned into five on three. Traktor couldn’t capitalize on the opportunity fast enough. Chistov found Bulis with a swift pass, and the latter propelled Traktor into the lead. But this wasn’t the end of Dynamo’s trouble – a minute later Kontiola made a pass to the near post where Yakutsenya doubled Traktor’s lead. 2-0 nine minutes into the game. Dynamo couldn’t recover from the shocker momentarily, allowing the home team to attack for a while. However, visitors were able to pull one back as Dmitry Pestunov hit the net with a backhander. In the closing moments of the period referee left Traktor shorthanded, but Dynamo couldn’t convert their advantage into goals.

Second period

Second period’s most notable moments were two superb goals and Garnett’s scintillating play, but let’s get to each of the events one by one. Dynamo had locked Traktor in the defensive zone for the three starting minutes of the period, making the home team commit a foul. The shorthanded play seemed to last for eternity, but Traktor managed to keep the lead. Shortly after that Anton Glinkin skated through the neutral zone, leaving three defenders behind, and took a shot that was turned away by Yeremenko. Three minutes later, however, he had to wave the white flag – Chistov made a fantastic pass to Kuznetsov who finished his partner’s efforts, making it three-to-one game. Right after Traktor had a power play yet again, but couldn’t create any substantial goal-scoring opportunities. 33rd minute of the game was the match’s most plentiful in terms of action. First Garnett stopped Kokarev’s ‘dead’ shot, then Sayustov couldn’t hit the puck; and then, as a pinnacle, Traktor’s power play came along. A minute later it became 5-on-3 and, just like in the first period, Dynamo was quickly punished for the penalty. Ryabykin slapped from the blue line, Bulis deflected the puck into the net, scoring his second goal of the game.

Third period

During the intermission Dynamo’s coach Oleg Znarok decided to send Yeremenko to the bench as Aleksey Volkov appeared on the ice. Traktor had to endure the two-man (at times even three-man) deficit in the starting minutes of the period. The way Traktor defended during these periods of time was flawless, just like taught in hockey books – the majority of the shots were blocked, and everything that got through was stopped by Garnett. Towards the end of Dynamo’s power play Soloviev took a vicious slapshot from the blue line, but Garnett made an astounding glove save. It was evident that Traktor was playing with a great deal of confidence. As the match was rolling along, Popov couldn’t put the puck away during another power play as Volkov prevented the hockey implement from coming in. The closing moments of the period were marked by goal-scoring chances created by Kontiola and Popov, but the score remained intact. After the match Valery Belousov was presented with a gift celebrating his record 1175th match as a coach in the Russian hockey top division. The crowd in attendance accompanied the ceremony with a barrage of applause. Traktor won a match they couldn’t afford to lose, making the best possible present for their coach.

Stats and details

Traktor (Chelyabinsk) vs Dynamo (Moscow) – 4:1 (2:1, 2:0, 0:0) 

Goals: Bulis (Ryabykin, Chistov), 8 (1:0 – power play); Yakutsenya (Kontiola), 9 (2:0 – power play); Pestunov (Kvapil), 13 (2:1); Kuznetsov (Chistov, Bulis), 29 (3:1); Bulis (Kuznetsov, Ryabykin), 35 (4:1 – power play).

Traktor (Chelyabinsk)

  1. Garnett;
  2. Quint – Ryabykin (A), Chistov – Bulis – Kuznetsov,
  3. Belov – Vasilchenko, Panov (A) – Kontiola – Yakutsenya,
  4. Shinin – Katichev, Glinkin – Popov – Antipov (C),
  5. Karpov – Sayustov – Suglobov.

Dynamo (Moscow)

  1. Yeremenko (A. Volkov 40:00 - 60:00)
  2. Novak (A) – Granak, Kasianchuk – Gorovikov (C) – Anisin,
  3. Soloviev – Jalasvaara, Kokarev (A) – Tsvetkov – Gynge,
  4. Mironov – Derlyuk, Kvapil – Pestunov – Mosalev,
  5. Barantsev, Goldenkov – Shafigulin – K. Volkov.

Penalty Minutes: 14 (2+6+6) - 12 (4+6+2).

Shots: 25 (12+7+6) - 29 (7+12+10).

Faceoffs Won: 33 (15+11+7) - 37 (9+11+17).

Time on Ice: Quint (24:03), Ryabykin (23:36), Belov (20:06) - Granak (23:38), Novak (22:22), Soloviev (19:18).

Power Play Goals: 3-0.

Referees: Viktor Gashilov (Perm, Russia), Sergey Gusev (Serov, Russia).

Linesmen: Petr Aleshin, Yury Ivanov (both – Saint-Petersburg, Russia).

September 16, 2012. Traktor Arena, Chelyabinsk, Russia. Attendance – 7500.