Helsinki hurts Caps’ hopes; Milan stops Minsk

Helsinki 6, Edinburgh 4 – A Jokerit win had playoff implications for both teams. The Capitals are locked in a fierce struggle with Dublin for the final playoff berth in the Northern Conference and they seemed to have the momentum, beating the Fighting Irish twice in the last week and rolling into Finland on a four-game win streak. The good fortune continued in the first period Monday, as Sidney Crosby scored twice and set up Sam Reinhart for a goal. But Helsinki tipped the game in their favor in the second period, outshooting Edinburgh 20-7 and getting goals from Alex Radulov and Jack Johnson to tie it. The theme of the third period was the same, with goals coming from Helsinki players Jason Spezza, Paul Stastny and Boone Jenner, while Kevin Hayes tallied a relatively meaningless goal for the visitors from Scotland. Helsinki is now a point behind Moscow but with 4 games in hand as the two teams battle for the last home-ice spot in the North.

Milan 3, Minsk 0 – The Hussars had to make the journey home from Milan to Minsk wondering how the Guerriero shut them down completely and snapped the top team in the league’s win streak at 11 games. Milan, which is in seventh place in the conference, played the Hussars tight all game and were ahead 1-0 and even in shots at 16-16 when the third period began, and they then turned on the jets, outshooting Minsk 14-6 over the final 20 minutes. Alex Stalock earned the shutout for the Guerriero and getting goals were his teammates Tyler Johnson in the second period and Danny Dekeyser early in the third. T.J. Brennan added an empty-net goal.

Stockholm 7, Lisbon 4 – The Eagles’ top line of David Krejci, Bryan Little and Bobby Ryan contributed a total of 9 points as Stockholm handed Lisbon its fifth straight loss. The Portuguese team that has been in a six-team dogfight near the top of the Southern Conference all season has now dropped into sixth place. Penalties didn’t help Lisbon’s cause, as the Stockholm powerplay units got to go to work five times before a penalty was called on Stockholm in the final period. John Klingberg and Brendan Gallagher tallied powerplay goals for the Eagles.

Oslo 3, London 0 – Semyon Varlamov would not be beaten and he left London with a 28-save shutout for the Oslo Outlaws. Jarkko Immonen of Oslo was the game’s strongest offensive force with 6 shots on goal and an assist. Goals were scored by defensemen Eric Gelinas and Morgan Rielly and forward Andrew Shaw. Four London defensemen blocked at least 3 shots each in the game.

Bern 4, Munich 3 – The Interrail can thank goalie Joonas Korpisalo and their penalty killers for the win in Bavaria. Munich outshot Bern 37-21 but the rookie  Korpisalo was stellar, especially in the first two periods. He is one of only two rookie goalies in the league, the other being Andrey Vasilevskiy of Prague Sparta. Bern afforded Munich’s powerplay five tries with the man advantage, but they were stuffed by Bern on all but one occasion, a Craig Smith goal. Brian Flynn scored late in the second period to tie the game at 3-3 late in the second period, and Interrail forward Mika Zibanejad was the only person to score in the third period, which saw Bern all but shut down Munich, limiting them to just 6 shots. The Bern win helped their Swiss cousins Zurich, who are chasing Munich for the final playoff position in the Southern Conference.

Berlin 5, Geneva 4 (OT) – In the last half-minute of overtime, Simon Despres’ long shot from the point hit Geneva forward Nazem Kadri’s stick and fluttered over goalie James Reimer’s shoulder to end it and give Berlin a much-needed two points. The Smurfs moved out of a tie with Madrid and Athens and into second place in the conference, although the teams behind them have games in hand. Derek Ryan scored twice for Berlin in the game and was out there at the end of overtime, earning an assist on Despres’ goal. Sergei Kostitsyn and Matt Read had two points each for the Generals.





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