26.12.2015 22:50

Team Canada slips past Spengler Cup newcomer Avtomobilist Yekaterinburg 2-1.

(Foto: EQ Images/Gian Ehrenzeller)

In the starting minutes the players of Avtomobilist Yekaterinburg and Team Canada gauged each other in an attempt to find right amount of physical contact. Crowd favorite Team Canada tried to play a fast-paced game, securing itself a slight advantage.

At first Matt Ellison, who plays for the KHL club Dynamo Minsk, was unfortunate; the Canadian first lost control of the puck in front of the net and was then stopped by the goal post. Likewise, Derek Roy was unable bury the puck in the net, as he failed to get past the Russian netminder Igor Ustinsky.

The lead came with the first buzzer. Trevor Carrick (20.) put the Canadians up 1-0 with a slapshot.


Yekaterinburg in the game until the end

The Russians had their strongest phase after the equalizer in the second period. Down a man, Alexander Torchenyuk (29./sh) broke away and netted the 1-1. Team Canada goaltender Drew MacIntyre then put himself in the spotlight as he stopped a shot by Vitali Popov on the goal line.

With a fast-paced 3-on-3 attack the Canadians regained the lead. Cory Conacher (38.) found the back of the net with a backhander.

In the final period Yekaterinburg played increasingly rough, which gave the Canadians a two-man advantage for nearly two minutes. However, as it turned out, that was no problem for the Russian KHL side.

The final minutes at the sold-out Vaillant Arena could not have been more suspenseful. The Canadian keeper MacIntyre saved a Tommi Kivisto shot and Kirill Knyazey’s attempt hit the post to secure a tight win for Team Canada.