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SKA - Dynamo Moscow. Press-conference

Roman RotenbergDynamo MoscowInterviewPress-conferenceArseniy KoromyslovValentin ZykovSKA - Dynamo Msk - 130123
HC SKA press-service

HC SKA head coach Roman Rotenberg:

- It was a hard-fought game against a strong opponent. Dynamo have a well-drilled, organised team which plays solidly in defence. All of our guys displayed commitment and blocked pucks. We're really happy that we were watertight in our own zone, this is a component which we want to improve. At the same time, we want to score more goals. I would like to thank our players and fans for this victory.

- How is Damir Zhafyarov feeling? He left the game as a consequence of an injury.

- We don't have a diagnosis yet. Damir hit his head during that incident, the Dynamo player competed in a physical manner. We would like to wish Damir a speedy recover. This was a playoff-level match, you have to be ready for anything. All of our players need to remember that the opponents will always try to land crunching hits against us. As soon as a you relax in any situation on the ice, such situations can occur. We don't need injuries.

- Did you keep in mind that SKA could have officially qualified for the Gagarin Cup playoffs today?

SKA - Dynamo Moscow. Press-conference

- No, I didn't. We're not looking at the standings, instead we are focusing on each individual game. We can't worry about things which aren't in our control. At the moment, we're thinking about how we can be more solid in defence, score more goals and improve our overall performance level. I'm pleased that we took advantage of our one powerplay today while shutting Dynamo's PP down.

- Amur beat Dinamo Minsk on the road today, and they did defeat SKA in Khabarovsk earlier in the campaign. Are you worried for Sunday?

- All of our opponents are strong. Every game starts at 0:0, we'll prepare seriously for the match. We know that Amur are battling for a place in the playoffs, so we understand that it will be a tough test.

- SKA's games against Dynamo were all very similar this season.

- We should improve with every passing game. Everything is only just starting, there's a possibility that we will meet Dynamo in the upcoming playoffs.

- For the first time in a long while, SKA kept a clean sheet.

- We improved a lot of the details. Every single one of our players competed with superb commitment, they showed their character and desire. A lot of our guys are only just starting to return from injury. We won this game because of our determination.

- Your players often took aim at Konstantin Volkov's right shoulder from difficult angles. Did you ask them to do this?

- We know Volkov well, he progressed through our system here. We won't reveal our secrets, but we didn't actually ask our players to shoot specifically against his right shoulder. I liked our first goal, it was a pass across the slot and it beat the goaltender. Goals are scored after taking aim from the correct position.

- What are the reasons behind putting Stepan Falkovsky and Andrei Pedan in a defensive partnership together?

- Despite the fact that they're both tall, they are great skaters and fit our system excellently. Our defensemen are vital for both defending and helping the attack, we like their chemistry when playing together in one line. When forming our lines, we take all factors into account. We want everyone to continue competing with so much commitment.

- Will you start experimenting with the line-up ahead of the playoffs?

- All experiments are undertaken with the goal of winning matches in mind. We don't have the opportunity to experiment for the sake of it, all of our players must compete for the win and show their best qualities on the ice when they're given the chance. Our way of playing demands a lot of energy from the players, we like to skate a lot, compete at a high tempo, land a lot of hits and take plenty of shots. We have to be prepared for any situation.

HC Dynamo Moscow head coach Alexei Kudashov:

- It was a good game with a great atmosphere. There's not much I can say, we didn't score a single goal.

- This is the second consecutive game against SKA in which you've failed to use your scoring opportunities.

- There's a lot of factors. Confidence is one of them, and at times we didn't fight hard enough on the crease.

- Didn't you feel that your players had too much desire maybe?

- Yes, emotions can sometimes get the better of the players. We have a team full of young players who want to quickly unleash shots on goal. As I have already said, there are a lot of factors.

- Why did you lift the puck out of your own zone?

- What else can we do if all of the options have been taken away? Opposing players aren't letting us clear the puck along the boards, so we have to lift the puck out midair. SKA did the same.

- Andrei Nikonov is a really aggressive, hungry player.

- It's all down to psychology. Moreover, Andrei knows how he can use his best qualities on the ice.

HC SKA defenseman Arseniy Koromyslov:

- It was a tough match for all of us. We won because we scored important goals and emerged victorious in the battles across the ice. This is a fantastic win for us!

- This was the sixth game against Dynamo in the current campaign. What aspects did the coaches focus on when preparing for this match?

- Dynamo are always compact, they like to chuck the puck towards the attacking zone and compete physically. It was important for us not to lose out in terms of the physical play. Overall, the main thing was to win the duels on the crease and in the corners.

- How much more difficult is the KHL in comparison to the MHL and the VHL?

- Obviously it's tougher here, but I'm trying my best not to let the team down. Personally, this was one of the most challenging games of the campaign so far.

HC SKA forward Valentin Zykov:

- It was a really compact game, only one goal decided the outcome. All of our matches against Dynamo are always compact, it's nothing new.

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