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"Ready for the Super Final!" Dynamo players’ practice on the morning of the Cup game

28 April 2015

The young players of Dynamo Moscow arrived at Omsk last night too exhausted to practice. A practice was scheduled for the morning, on the day of the Super Final itself. Just like for adult players!

We put a few questions to Grigory Perov, a forward with Dynamo-2004.

— You won West Group. Was it easy?

“Of course not. CSKA and Vityaz are very strong teams. It took strength of will to win against them. It was very hard, we had to be at our very best.”

— You have already practiced for more than an hour here today at the Omsk Arena. Are you tired?

“No. It was a regular ice training. We are well prepared for Avangard, although they will be very tough opponents.”

Dynamo Moscow players at their morning practice before the Super Final against Omsk Avangard.

Before the tournament, the Dynamo boys had no idea what it was like to play in front of packed stands. But, as they say themselves, they are getting used to it and aren’t scared by the prospect of the Omsk Arena packed to capacity (10,000 people), most of them home fans.

“We have already played in front of that many spectators in St Petersburg,” the Dynamo-2004 forward, Fyodor Filin tells us. “It’s great to play in an environment where everyone is shouting and cheering, giving you encouragement. This is a really good tournament and really useful — it gives us loads of experience.”

The white-and-blues practice a face-off — one of the most important moments in any hockey game.

After the practice, Mikhail Vasilevsky, the Dynamo-2004 head coach, will have just a few hours to get his team in the mood for the decisive battle and to tell them how to play against Avangard, which swept its East Group opponents aside earlier in the tournament. The coach made it clear: Dynamo has a plan, and we are looking forward to a game between two absolutely committed teams!

— Commentators say that you have three equal lines, each of which could decide the outcome of the game.

“Well, technically, that’s right. Our fourth line is good, too. Unfortunately, because of the format of the games — three 15-minute periods — it is hard to play with three fives. We have quite a long bench. We also have left some good boys back in Moscow, and we are counting on them in the future. The competition is very intense.”

— They say that Dynamo has players from all over Russia. Is that so?

“Yes, we have boys from other towns and cities. That’s OK for a club as big as Dynamo. But most of the players are from Moscow or Moscow Region.”

Covering all the angles! Success in the Super Final will depend largely on how the keepers play.

The Super Final of the 9th Gazprom Neft Cup will start at 16:30 Moscow time (19:30 local time) and will be broadcast live on KHL TV, and on the official tournament website.