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Petri Kontiola: Traktor works on diesel fuel

- Let’s say it was not the best of matches, but still we are glad that we won. Of course we got lucky with the third goal, but luck favors the strong. Dinamo played very well, and I can’t say whether we deserved to win or not, but the fact of the matter is we got it.

Q: Once again Traktor got rid of trouble only in the third period. Why can you not start the game this way?
A: We always play terrible first periods, but third periods are our forte. It happens all the time, but I don’t know why. We have to deal with this somehow.

Q: Last season Traktor at times had the same problem.
A: Apparently our Traktor works on diesel fuel; first we warm up, and then we are on full throttle (laughs).

Q: You personally had to warm up in the beginning of the season, it seems, but now you are full speed ahead in terms of points.
A: In any event, both I and my team began the season pretty well. I hope we will keep it up.

Q: Does the overall +- index lead warm you up?
A: My linemates deserve a lot of credit for that. We constantly improve our mutual understanding. In fact, Kostitsyn is a great addition to Traktor’s roster; he is a very skillful and hard-working player, just what we needed.

Q: Did Traktor become stronger in comparison with the previous season?
A: Last season everyone was surprised with our performance. This season everyone expects us to win, and we try to oblige. However, we could improve certain aspects of the game, like first periods, for example. As for the roster, I think it got the needed depth. Take a look at Popov, Glinkin and Karpov; these guys are absolutely on fire! And here’s the reality check – they play in fourth line; but looking at their performance, they could very play in the first. Now we’ve got four equally strong lines, and this is our strength.

Q: Other teams got stronger as well; some strong NHL players came to play here.
A: I’m actually glad it has happened. It’s great for KHL. The interest towards the league is rising; the influx of NHL players has raised the level of competitiveness. So in essence, it is a good thing.

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