Vasily Koshechkin has been granted a release from his contract with Lada Togliatti and has signed with Metallurg Magnitogorsk, according to sports-planet.ru and Togliatti's website. The Lada franchise, which has been cash strapped for the past three plus seasons, failed to make payroll for over two months, allowing several players to petition the league for free agency due to breach of contract. Koshechkin was granted his release and will now play for Magnitogorsk, which currently sits in second in the Eastern Conference and has the third best record in the KHL.
The 26 year old netminder was taken by the Lightning in the 8th round, 233rd overall, in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft. Despite several overtures from the Lightning during Jay Feaster's time as GM, Koshechkin has remained in Russia for the duration of his career to this point, playing primarily with Togliatti with a short stint with Kazan. Standing at 6'6" tall, the mammoth netminder is recognized as one of Russia's finest goaltenders, having appeared in several Euro Tour events and the World Championships for his homeland. Koshechkin is also one of six netminders being considered for Russia's 2010 Olympic team.
The Lightning get a solid road win.
Mike Smith played well allowing 1 goal on 31 shots. He's back in the fight.
TB 5:59, Lecavalier 3 (Malone, Krajicek)
TB 14:44, Tanguay 4 (Malone, Stamkos)(PP)
PHX 19:20, Aucoin 3 (Lepisto, Upshall)(PP)
TB 4:30, St. Louis 4 (Lecavalier, Tanguay)
TB 11:46, Lecavalier 4 (Tanguay)
The Lightning did well to capitalize on some early penalties to stake themselves to a 2-0 lead and they never really looked back. Phoenix had a bit better play at even strength, but the Lightning turned it up when they needed to in order to salt the game away in the third. NHL teams should beware: the Lecavalier line is starting to click.
Steve Downie had 1 hit in 15:19.
Zenon Konopka had 1 hit in 10:49 and was 62% on draws.
Paul Szczechura was +1 with 1 shot and 1 hit in 13:21.
James Wright had 2 hits in 13:55.
Victor Hedman was +1 with 2 hits and 1 blocked shot in 21:10. Light night for the big Swede.
Omsk 1 @ Magnitogorsk 2 (SO)
Karri Ramo, Omsk, Loss, 24/25, 0.92 GAA, .960 sv%
Season totals: 20 GP, 11-8, 2 SO, 1.79 GAA, .918 sv%
Ramo's only blemish in three shootout attempts faced was a goal by former Blackhawk Igor Radulov, but it was enough to send Omsk to defeat.
Yulaev 4 @ Ekaterinburg 3 (OT)
Denis Kazionov, Ekaterinburg, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season totals: 22 GP, 2-3-5, -7, 8 PIM
Kazionov played 9:56 in the match. Alexander Radulov, the former Predator and little brother of Igor, had the overtime winner for Yulaev.
Togliatti 3 @ Dynamo Riga 2
Vasily Koshechkin, Togliatti, Win, 25/27, 2.00 GAA, .926 sv%
Season totals: 23 GP, 9-12, 2 SO, 2.12 GAA, .921 sv%
Togliatti currently sits at 7th place in the Eastern Conference.
Kazan 2 @ Dynamo Moscow 1 (OT)
Dimitry Kazionov, Kazan, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season totals: 24 GP, 6-1-7, -3, 10 PIM
Johan Harju, Dynamo Moscow, 0-0-0, E, 2 PIM, 2 SOG
Season totals: 24 GP, 2-4-6, -5, 14 PIM
Kazionov played 12:21 in the match for Kazan. Harju played 17:03 for Dynamo but was an uncharacteristic 39% in the faceoff circles. KHL superstar Alexei Morozov scored the winner for Kazan, which was his 15th goal of the season.
Windsor Spitfires 3 @ Brampton Battalion 2 (OT)
C Richard Panik, WSR: 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM
Season Totals: 23 GP, 4-8-12, +11, 8 PIM
Panikâ€™s stat line during the last five games: 0-0-0, -4, 2 PIM. One would think Windsor was struggling, but theyâ€™re 5-0 and averaging about four goals per game during that time. In fact, Windsorâ€™s streak of games with at least a point reached 15 games with the OT win in Brampton.
Niagara IceDogs 1 @ Ottawa 67â€™s 2 (SO)
LW Matais Sointu, OTT: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM
Season Totals: 19 GP, 3-7-10, +6, 6 PIM
Sointu did not participate in the shootout.
Guelph Storm 3 @ Oshawa Generals 2
G Michael Zador, OSH: Loss, 22 saves on 25 shots
Season Totals: 17 GP, 7-9-1-0, 3.42 GAA, .893 sv%, 1 SO
Zador has played well lately, though his won-loss record doesnâ€™t reflect it.
Kootenay Ice 3 @ Lethbridge Hurricanes 2 (OT)
RW Carter Ashton, LET: 0-0-0, -1, 4 PIM (roughing, unsportsmanlike conduct)
Season Totals: 22 GP, 12-12-24, -5, 44 PIM
Ashtonâ€™s nine game point streak and three game goal streak came to an end in the OT loss.
No.15 Vermont Catamounts 3 @ No.16 Boston College Eagles 2
C/W Matt Marshall , UVM: 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season Totals: 9 GP, 1-1-2, E, 2 PIM
This was a big bounce-back win for Vermont, who lost 7-1 to BC on Saturday.