Metallurg Magnitogorsk began Round 1 of their Gagarin Cup playoff series against Kunlun Red Star on Wednesday. Kunlun Red Star, located in Beijing, China, just joined the KHL for the 2016-2017 season, but still managed to qualify for the Gagarin Cup playoffs.
Capitals top goalie prospect, Ilya Samsonov started in goal for Mettalurg, saving 26 of the 28 shots, as Metallurg won 4-2.
In each of the first and second periods, Samsonov faced 9 shots and saved them all. During the third period, he saved 8 of the 10 shots, as he faced intense pressure from Red Star. Incidentally, it was Samsonov’s 20th birthday as he celebrated with a playoff win for himself and his team.
Tomas Filippi scored the first goal at 7:50 of the first period to give Mettlaurg a 1-0 lead. The team added three more goals during the second period to open up a 4-0 lead. Filippi scored his second goal of the game early that period while Yaroslav Kosov scored just seven seconds later.
Midway through the second period, Viktor Antipin scored the team’s fourth goal on a power play.
Kunlun Red Star would add a power play goal by Tuukka Mantyla to break the shutout and scored midway through the period on another goal by Mantyla. During that period, Kunlun Red Star had 23 shot attempts, as opposed to only 8 for Magnitka.
Kunlun Red Star’s bid for a comeback was aided by two penalties by Magnitka, but only one resulted in a power play goal. Ironically, Mantyla, who had scored the third period goals for Red Star, earned twelve penalty minutes during the second period, including a minor for a “Check to the Head and Neck” and a 10-minute misconduct. Here are the full video highlights from the game:
Metallurg Magnitogorsk now leads the series against Kunlun Red Star 1-0. The teams resume play on Friday February 24 in Arena Metallurg in Magnitogorsk.
HAPPY 20TH BIRTHDAY ILYA!
Earlier in the day, Samsonov’s mother, Natalya, posted a picture of her and her son with the Gagarin Cup, with the following message, as translated:
“Happy Birthday Son! Birthday – this is the day which connects the mother and son forever. He will never forget that day, because it is his feast, which he always remind passport and loved ones, and his mother will never forget the day she found happiness of motherhood! Happy Birthday to you! Be happy and healthy! Be a real man! Let all your wildest ideas and plans come true! Be strong wall for everyone! Be yourself, be real! I am extremely grateful to God for what you have given me.”
By Diane Doyle