Helenius, Riku

SM-liiga Game Day: 3-28-12

SM-liiga Quarterfinals (Finland):
(5)Assat 1 @ (4)JYP 4
JYP Wins the Series 4-0
Riku Helenius, JYP, DNP
Playoff totals: 3 GP, 3-0-0, 0 SO, 1.67 GAA, .951 sv%
Regular season totals: 33 GP, 21-9-1, 7 SO, 1.64 GAA, .936 sv%

Riku Helenius got the day off as backup Joni Myllykoski stopped 28 of 29 shots in JYP's series-clinching Game Four 4-1 win. Former Lightning forward Eric Perrin had a goal and was the game's second star.

JYP and Jokerit are already through to the SM-liiga Semifinals. In the other two series, top seed KalPa is up on Espoo Blues 3-1 and Karpat is up 3-1 on Lahti Pelicans. The Semifinal round begins next Wednesday, April 4th.

European Game Day: 3-26-12

SM-liiga Quarterfinals (Finland):
(4)JYP 4 @ (5)Assat 3
JYP Leads the Series 3-0
Riku Helenius, JYP, Win, 31/34, 3.00 GAA, .912 sv%
Playoff totals: 3 GP, 3-0-0, 0 SO, 1.67 GAA, .951 sv%
Regular season totals: 33 GP, 21-9-1, 7 SO, 1.64 GAA, .936 sv%

Ex-Lightning forward Eric Perrin scored the eventual game winning goal on the power play in JYP's 4-3 Game Three victory over Assat. JYP goes for the sweep Wednesday.

MHL Western Conference Semifinals (Russia Jr.):
Cherepovets Jr. 4 @ CSKA Jr. 3
Cherepovets Jr. Leads the Series 1-0
Nikita Kucherov, CSKA Jr., 0-0-0, -2, 0 PIM, 5 SOG
Playoff totals (MHL): 4 GP, 1-1-2, -3, 0 PIM
Regular Season totals (MHL): 23 GP, 24-19-43, +16, 40 PIM
Regular Season totals (KHL): 18 GP, 1-3-4, -1, 4 PIM

Tough night for Nikita Kucherov, who was -2 in CSKA Jr.'s Game One loss to Cherepovets Jr. Game Two is Tuesday.

European Game Day: 3-24-12

SM-liiga Quarterfinals (Finland):
(5)Assat 1 @ (4)JYP 2
JYP Leads the Series 2-0
Riku Helenius, JYP, Win, 31/32, 1.00 GAA, .969 sv%
Playoff totals: 2 GP, 2-0-0, 0 SO, 1.00 GAA, .971 sv%
Regular season totals: 33 GP, 21-9-1, 7 SO, 1.64 GAA, .936 sv%

You know you're playing amazing hockey as a goaltender when you stop 31 of 32 in a victory and your save percentage actually gets worse because of the effort. That's how embarrassingly well Riku Helenius has played in his first 2 games of the SM-liiga playoffs, though, helping to stake JYP to a 2-0 series lead. Ex-Lightning forward Eric Perrin was the first star of Game Two, assisting on both of JYP's goals. Game Three is Monday.

KHL Eastern Conference Semifinals (Russia):
Caps first rounder Evgeny Kuznetsov had a pair of goals to lead Chelyabinsk to a series clinching 4-1 win over Kazan. Traktor takes the series 4-2. Nikita Nesterov did not play in the match. The KHL Eastern Conference Finals begin Thursday with Chelyabinsk facing Omsk and former Lightning netminder Karri Ramo, which was the 2 seed. The entire Eastern Conference bracket has been chalk so far.

European Game Day: 3-22-12

SM-liiga Quarterfinals (Finland):
(4) JYP 4 @ (5) Assat 1
JYP Leads the Series 1-0
Riku Helenius, JYP, Win, 35/36, 1.00 GAA, .972 sv%
Playoff totals: 1 GP, 1-0-0, 0 SO, 1.00 GAA, .972 sv%
Regular season totals: 33 GP, 21-9-1, 7 SO, 1.64 GAA, .936 sv%

So far, so good. Riku Helenius stopped 35 of 36 shots he faced in JYP's 4-1 Game One throttling of Assat. Ex-Lightning defenseman Kristian Kudroc assisted on Assat's only goal. Game Two is Saturday.

KHL Eastern Conference Semifinals (Russia):
Danis Zaripov scored the game winner at 8:54 of the third overtime session to deliver Kazan a thrilling 2-1 Game Five win over Chelyabinsk. Chelyabinsk still holds a 3-2 edge in the series. Nikita Nesterov did not dress for Chelyabinsk. Game Six is Saturday.

European Game Day: 3-20-12

SM-liiga Playoffs (Finland):
The field of 8 is complete. Blues Espoo crushed Lukko 6-3 in Game Three of their mini play-in series, joining Karpat as the other recipient of a play-in spot. Riku Helenius and JYP will play Assat in the Quarterfinals beginning on Thursday.

KHL Eastern Conference Semifinals (Russia):
Former Blackhawks draft pick Petri Kontiola's goal late in the third period lifted Chelyabinsk to a 3-2 Game Four victory over Ak Bars Kazan. Nikita Nesterov did not play in the match. Chelyabinsk leads the series 3-1 and will go in for the kill on Thursday.

MHL Western Conference Quarterfinals (Russia Jr.):
CSKA Jr. rolled to a 7-2 Game Four victory to knot their series at 2-2. Nikita Kucherov did not play in the match. The decisive Game Five will be on Friday.

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