Archive for January, 2008

Newsflash: Samsonov Remembers How to Play Hockey

Sergei Samsonov in action for CarolinaIt appears that Sergei Samsonov has finally gotten the message. After a pathetic season with Montreal last year and an equally unimpressive start with Chicago this year Sergei was sent down to the minors. Yes, things were so bad that no one even claimed him off waivers despite the fact that Chicago would have to pay half of his salary. It seemed that Samsonov’s NHL career was over as everyone in the league has given up on a man with boatloads of talent.

However, after just a couple of games in the AHL the Hawks decided to recall Sammy and had to clear waivers once again. This time the Carolina Hurricanes, hit by injuries and struggling to score, decided to give him his last shot at the NHL. So far so good. Sergei has gotten a lot of playing time in Carolina and is back to putting up excellent numbers. 9 games played, 8 points earned (3 goals and 5 assists).

For a man blessed with the talent Sergei possesses his numbers last year for Montreal and this year for Chicago were simply inexplicable. Let’s hope he keeps it up because when he’s playing well he’s still one of the most exciting hockey players to watch.


January 31, 2008 at 11:45 am Leave a comment

Kovalchuk Taken Out by Ruutu

In last night’s 4-1 win by the Atlanta Thrashers over the Pittsburgh Penguins Jarkko Ruutu took Atlanta’s best player and one of the NHL’s leading goal scorers out of the game with a knee on knee hit. If the Penguins don’t put a leash on Ruutu they better not be whining when one of these days someone will try to put either Sidney Crosby or Yevgeniy Malkin in the hospital.

Notice how Ruutu “backs up” the hit after Atlanta’s Steve McCarthy comes after him. That a boy! Make a dirty hit, then bend over the boards and try to hide on your team’s bench.

January 31, 2008 at 11:36 am Leave a comment

RSL Game of the Week: Dinamo Moscow @ Ak Bars Kazan 01.28.2008

Dinamo Moscow @ Ak Bars Kazan

Well, since we’ve just launched and also because we couldn’t pass up this great matchup we’re giving you another game this week. Yes, you’ve already earned a bonus!

The famous Dinamo Moscow (known better in the West as Dynamo) travels to Kazan to take on the resurgent powerhouse Ak Bars. After a surprisingly difficult start to the season the Kazan team is back to its best and climbing the standings. Dinamo, which came into the season with lofty expectations have struggled mightily, but are playing better since replacing Vladimir Krikunov with Czech Vladimír Vůjtek.

We’ve already listed players to watch on Ak Bars in one of the previous RSL GofW posts, so this time we’ll just give you some players to keep an eye on for the Moscovites. #7 is the up and coming Canadian defenseman Mark Giordano who went to play in Russia after a contract dispute with the Calgary Flames; #95 is a veteran of the NHL Daniil Markov who just returned to Russia after spending last season with the Detroit Red Wings; #9 is Canadian center Eric Landry who spent some time in the NHL with Calgary and Montreal; #22 is the tough hitting Oleg Orekhovsky; #13 Minnesota Wild’s prospect Roman Voloshchenko; #17 Alexander Kharitonov who spent a season in the NHL with Tampa Bay Lightning; #27 Dmitriy Afanasenkov who spent last season with the Philadelphia Flyers; #43 Vitaliy Yachmenev, formerly of the Los Angeles Kings and the Nashville Predators and #55 Dinamo’s leading scorer Alexei Badyukov.

Missing from this game is #91 Fedor Fedorov, the younger brother of Sergei Fedorov, who never quite stuck in the NHL. It is a mystery of why not since he’s looked as one of the most exciting players in the RSL this season and very much resembles his famous brother in looks, stature and skating style (maybe not the attitude towards the game). I’m sure you’ll see him in another Dinamo Moscow game after he recovers from injury.

You can watch the game in the streaming player or download the file to your computer by clicking the “Open Containing Folder” link below the player, right clicking the file and selecting the “download” option.

We recommend the free VLC media player for playing it.

January 30, 2008 at 3:23 pm 1 comment

RSL Game of the Week: CSKA Moscow @ Avangard Omsk 01.25.2008

CSKA Moscow @ Avangard Omsk

For our second RSL Game of the Week we have chosen a clash between one of the most famous Russian clubs, Central Sports Club of Army (CSKA) Moscow (known better in North America as the Red Army Club) and one of the perennial leaders of Russian and European hockey in the new era, the oil rich Avangard Omsk. CSKA is back to being a force in Russian hockey and in this game they’re visiting one of the best modern hockey arenas in Russia in Omsk.

The New York Rangers fans might have a special interest in this game as they would get an opportunity to check out how one of their top prospects, Alexei Cherepanov, is doing. Watch for # 7 on Avangard. Other notable players for Avangard are #8 Yevgeniy Kurbatov, one of the best defensemen in the recent World Junior Championships, who is still undrafted; #33 Anton Babchuk, one of the Russian players who have recently returned home from the NHL (Carolina Hurricanes); same goes for #15 Alexander Svitov (Columbus Blue Jackets); #19 is another talented Russian junior Anton Kuryanov; also in this game is #39 Pavel Rosa who played a few games in the NHL for the Los Angelese Kings.

CSKA Moscow features #7 Canadian defenseman James Pollock who has played 9 NHL games with St.Louis, but spent most of his career in the AHL; #28 talented offensive defenseman Denis Kulyash (whose rights belong to the Nashville Predators); #44 Yevgeniy Artyukhin who spent a full season in the NHL with the the Tampa Bay Lighnting; #24 Pyotr Schastlivy, one of the top RSL scorers in recent years; #71 Ladislav Kohn who had 4 very decent seasons in the NHL with the St.Louis Blues and finally #91 Oleg Saprykin, another NHL returnee who played for the Calgary Flames and the Phoenix Coyotes.

Note: We have discovered that the end of this game got cut off during our original upload. The issue has been fixed and the game is now available in its entirety.

You can watch the game in the streaming player or download the file to your computer by clicking the “Open Containing Folder” link below the player, right clicking the file and selecting the “download” option.

We recommend the free VLC media player for playing it.

January 30, 2008 at 2:33 am 2 comments

RSL Game of the Week: Traktor Chelyabinsk @ Ak Bars Kazan 01.08.2008

Traktor Chelyabinsk @ Ak Bars Kazan

For our first RSL Game of the Week we’ve chosen a recent brawl filled game between Ak Bars Kazan and Traktor Chelyabinsk instead of a game from this past week. The brawl was all over Youtube, blogosphere and even made its way onto ESPN SportCenter, so we think there would be quite a few hockey fans who would like to check out the entire game, which was a quiet exciting affair even when the teams were playing actual hockey rather than kicking the crap out of each other.

Traktor Chelyabinsk is captained by former NHL veteran #13 Andrei Nikolishin and coached by the only Russian enforcer to ever lace them up in the NHL, Andrei Nazarov.

Ak Bars Kazan, a perennial powerhouse in the modern era of Russian hockey, is coming off winning the IIHF Continental Cup. The team features #35 Finnish goalie Mika Noronen, who spent most of his time in the NHL with the Buffalo Sabres; #2 Canadian minor leaguer Raymond Giroux; a number of young NHL prospects #5 Ilya Nikulin (Atlanta Thrashers), #59 Vyacheslav Buravchikov (Buffalo Sabres) who captained Russia in the recent World Junior Championships and #74 tough hitting defenseman Alexei Yemelin (Montreal Canadiens). Also playing for Ak Bars in this game are Montreal veteran #14 Oleg Petrov, RSL stars #25 Danis Zaripov and #42 Sergei Zonovyev as well as former Pittsburgh Penguin #95 Alexei Morozov.

Full Line-ups:

Ak Bars:
G: Noronen;

D: Giroux, Seleznev, Nikulin, Pervyshin, Zubarev, Buravchikov, Yemelin, Panin;

F: Oleg Petrov, Čajanek, Shafigulin, Zhukov, Zaripov, Arkhipov, Stepanov, Zinovyev, Hentunen, Kazionov, Alexeyev, Kirill Petrov, Morozov.

Alistratov (Mylnikov 36 (Alistratov 39));

Piganovich – Sazonov, Kasyanchuk – Nikolishin (k) – Kalyanin;
Bayev – Yezhov, Popov – Zavarukhin – Galkin;
Konev – Dydykin, Skachkov – Vorel – Mikhnov;
Orlov – Korovkin, Rayenko – Nabokov – Vorontsov.

You can watch the game in the streaming player or download the file to your computer by clicking the “Open Containing Folder” link below the player, right clicking the file and selecting the “download” option.We recommend the free VLC media player for playing it.

January 25, 2008 at 4:44 pm Leave a comment

Hello world!

We were thinking about what we should write for our first post and decided that our nice little write-up for the About section will serve as a perfect introduction of our site to you, so here we go.

This website is for the English speaking fans of hockey, Russian style. Our main goal is to provide irreverent coverage of the Russian Super League (considered by most experts to be the second best hockey league in the world) as well as commentary on the performance of Russian born players in the NHL as well as other North American and European leagues.

The focus will definitely be on the Russian Super League (RSL) as we aim to fill the void of its coverage in English and will try to bring a light hearted, humorous style of writing to it. However, we’ll sure give plenty of attention to the Russian-born NHLers as well.

Here’s the kicker. We will also give you an opportunity to actually watch RSL games with our RSL Game of the Week feature so that you can make up your own mind about the quality of the league, follow your team’s Russian prospects or catch up with some former NHLers. We feel that it’s about time North American fans had a chance to see the RSL for themselves. As they say, it’s always better to see once than to hear about it a thousand times.

Welcome to the site and we hope you enjoy your stay.

January 25, 2008 at 2:05 pm Leave a comment


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