8. SKA, 27 matches, 15 regulation victories, 1 overtime victory, 8 regulation defeats, 2 penalty shootout defeats, 1 overtime defeat, goal difference 82-61, 35 points
19. Amur, 29 matches, 7 regulation victories, 3 overtime victories, 1 penalty shootout victory, 16 regulation defeats, 2 penalty shootout defeats, goal difference 62-86, 24 points
Amur have been improving in recent weeks. Considered as one of the main KHL outsiders, the Khabarovsk-based club have proven their capability of shocking the so-called bigger clubs, notably earning impressive victories against Jokerit Helsinki (4:1), Ak Bars Kazan (7:1), Avangard Omsk (2:1) and Metallurg Magnitogorsk (2:1 OT) on home ice. Overall, Amur have claimed 11 victories in their 29 games so far in the 2020/2021 campaign, with four of those wins having been tallied in their most recent six matches. As a consequence of their promising form, the Tigers are now in the mix for a Gagarin Cup playoff spot, sitting in 10th position of the Eastern Conference and only one point behind eighth-placed Sibir Novosibirsk. Czech brothers Hynek Zohorna (3+8) and Tomas Zohorna (5+8) - both forwards - form Amur’s main threat, however it must be said that their leading scorer is currently Vladimir Butuzov with 16 (8+8) points. Gleb Koryagin is their most productive defenseman with nine (2+7) points to his name.
In early October, Amur did host SKA in Khabarovsk, conceding a 1:3 defeat with Nikita Chibrikov, Ivan Volodin and Vladimir Tkachyov all scoring for SKA. Goalkeeper Mikhail Berdin 36 of the 27 Amur shots he faced.
Our players have been displaying entertaining, effective ice hockey since the international break ended. Following the completion of the first stage of the Euro Hockey Tour, SKA have emerged victorious in four of their five matches, managing to beat Jokerit (4:1), Vityaz Podolsk (8:1) and Severstal Cherepovets (2:0) on the road before edging past Salavat Yulaev Ufa (3:2 OT) in Saint Petersburg. Nevertheless, on Wednesday, our team did suffer a bitter home loss to Traktor Chelyabinsk (0:1), a game which was decided by one goal deep into the third period. SKA do occupy second spot of the Western Conference with 35 points on the board, 12 less than leaders CSKA Moscow.
POINTS LEADERS IN LAST FIVE MATCHES
Vladimir Tkachyov: 5 (2+3) points
Miro Aaltonen: 4 (3+1) points
Viktor Antipin: 4 (0+4) points
Hynek Zohorna: 5 (2+3) points
Tomas Zohorna: 5 (2+3) points
Yury Sergienko: 3 (2+1) points
In goal, Evgeny Alikin (92.5%, 2.42) and Marek Langhamer (91.1%, 2.92) have been largely taking in turns for Amur, competing in 18 and 13 matches respectively. 23-year-old Evgeny Kiselyov (89.9%, 4.72) has only participated in three games to date.
As for SKA, 18-year-old Yaroslav Askarov (96.2%, 0.96, 1 shutout) has been trusted with guarding our net on a regular basis recently, making appearances against Vityaz, Salavat Yulaev and Traktor while only conceding a mere two goals along the way. Swedish goaltender Magnus Hellberg (7 matches, 93.1%, 2.44, 1 shutout) and Berdin (13 matches, 91.6%, 2.49) have also regularly been on the ice in the past month.
WHERE TO WATCH
Puck drop at the Ice Palace is scheduled for 17:30 local time. Channel 78 and KHL TV will show the duel on television in Russia, whereas you can purchase a live video from the KHL’s official website worldwide. Text updates can be found on our Twitter account.