European Leagues

Bolt Prospect of the Week: March 24, 2014

We continue our Bolt Prospect of the Week award, an honor (virtually) given to one Tampa Bay Lightning prospect for their recent contributions on and off the ice.

The Bolt Prospect of the Week for March 24, 2014 is … Andrey Vasilevskiy, G, Salavat Yulaev Ufa (KHL – Russia).

If playoff experience is instrumental in a prospect’s development, Andrey Vasilevskiy is being subject to a symphony.

Ufa’s teenage goaltender has been in net for all of the club’s playoff games so far, including a pressure-packed Game 7 against Novgorod last Tuesday. Down 2-0 in the series, he turned in a triple-overtime gem in Game 3, and allowed just two goals in each of Games 4 and 5 before a Game 6 loss.

His team was outplayed in Game 7, being outshot 35-21, but Vasilevskiy turned aside all but one shot en route to a 2-1 win. Ufa had a 2-0 lead in the game and survived with Vasilevskiy under siege in the third period.

KHL Playoff Game Day: 3-22-14

KHL Eastern Conference Semifinals
(1)Magnitogorsk 3 vs. (2)Novosibirsk 2
Magnitogorsk Leads the Series 2-0
Vasily Koshechkin, Magnitogorsk, Win, 28/30, 2.00 GAA, .933 sv%
Regular season totals: 51 GP, 30-12-8, 9 SO, 1.88 GAA, .940 sv%
Playoff totals: 7 GP, 6-1-0, 0 SO, 2.00 GAA, .929 sv%

Ex-Lightning draft pick Dmitri Kazionov scored a shorthanded goal and ex-Blue Jackets draft pick Sergei Mozyakin had the game winning goal for Magnitogorsk in their 3-2 win over Novosibirsk in Game Two of their second round series. It was Kazionov's first point of the playoffs. Ex-Red Wings farmhand Francis Pare had Metallurg's other goal.

(2)Astana 5 vs. (4)Ufa 2
Series Tied 1-1
Andrey Vasilevskiy, Ufa, Loss, 31/36, 5.04 GAA, .861 sv%
Regular season totals: 28 GP, 14-8-5, 3 SO, 2.21 GAA, .923 sv%
Playoff totals: 9 GP, 5-4-0, 0 SO, 2.27 GAA, .927 sv%

Andrey Vasilevskiy was pulled for the final 28 seconds of play in Ufa's 5-2 loss to Barys Astana. Astana got 3 assists from former Lightning forward Brandon Bochenski and a goal from former Lightning defenseman Kristian Kudroc in the win.

KHL Game Day: 3-21-14

KHL Eastern Conference Semifinals
(1)Magnitogorsk 3 vs. (6)Novosibirsk 2 (OT)
Magnitogorsk Leads the Series 1-0
Vasily Koshechkin, Magnitogorsk, 32/34, 1.81 GAA, .941 sv%
Regular season totals: 51 GP, 30-12-8, 9 SO, 1.88 GAA, .940 sv%
Playoff totals: 6 GP, 5-1-0, 0 SO, 2.00 GAA, .929 sv%

Ex-Blue Jackets draft pick Sergei Mozyakin scored a power play goal 6:29 into Overtime to deliver Metallurg a 3-2 Game One win over Novosibirsk. Mozyakin also had a pair of helpers in the match to lead the way for Magnitogorsk.

(2)Astana 2 vs. (4)Ufa 3 (OT)
Ufa Leads the Series 1-0
Andrey Vasilevskiy, Ufa, Win, 35/37, 1.97 GAA, .946 sv%
Regular season totals: 28 GP, 14-8-5, 3 SO, 2.21 GAA, .923 sv%
Playoff totals: 8 GP, 5-3-0, 0 SO, 1.95 GAA, .936 sv%

Ex-NHLer Nikita Filatov scored 1:17 into Overtime to give his club, Ufa, a 3-2 Game One win over Barys Astana. Ex-Canucks draft pick Kirill Koltsov dropped in 2 assists in the win. Former Lightning defenseman Mike Lundin had a goal in defeat for Barys and former Lightning forward Brandon Bochenski also had a helper in the loss for Astana.

KHL Playoff Game Day: 3-19-14

Nadezhda Cup
Omsk 5 vs. Khanty-Mansiysk 1
Nikita Gusev, Khanty-Mansisysk, 0-1-1, -2, 0 PIM, 8 SOG
Regular season totals: 44 GP, 8-6-14, -6, 10 PIM
Tournament totals: 6 GP, 3-3-6, -3, 0 PIM

Happy trails to Nikita Gusev and Yugra, who dropped the fourth and final game of their second round Nadezhda Cup matchup with Omsk 5-1. Gusev played 16:02 in the match and had a power play assist on his club's only goal. Omsk got a hat trick from former Montreal forward Sergei Kostitsyn as well as 1 goal and 3 points from former Flyers draft pick Stefan Ruzicka in victory.

Despite his team's setback, Gusev can feel good about a fine final couple of months in KHL regular season and in the Nadezhda Cup after playing very sparingly the first 2/3 of the season. His point a game pace in this year's Nadezhda Cup bested his production in last year's Nadezhda Cup with Khabarovsk (5 points) in half the games. Recall, Gusev played much of his junior hockey in CSKA's organization and with Team Russia on a line with current Lightning rookie forward Nikita Kucherov. The end of Gusev's year gives us some optimism he may be able to continue to develop and one day play again with Kucherov in the NHL.

KHL Playoff Game Day: 3-18-14

Eastern Conference Quarterfinals
(4)Ufa 2 vs. (5)Novgorod 1
Ufa Wins the Series 4-3
Andrey Vasilevskiy, Ufa, Win, 34/35, 1.00 GAA, .971 sv%
Regular season totals: 28 GP, 14-8-5, 3 SO, 2.21 GAA, .923 sv%
Playoff totals: 7 GP, 4-3-0, 0 SO, 1.95 GAA, .934 sv%

Andrey Vasilevskiy helped burnish his credentials as a big game goaltender, turning aside 34 shots to help Ufa overcome a 35-21 shot disparity in the team's Game Seven, 2-1, opening round triumph over Novgorod. Ufa built a 2-0 lead in the contest thanks in part to a goal by former Senators second rounder Igor Mirnov and held on for the 2-1 win. Defenseman Sergei Bernatsky had Novgorod's lone goal.

The 4 seed Ufa moves on to face 2nd seeded Barys Astana in the Eastern Conference Semifinals round starting Friday.

Nadezhda Cup
Omsk 8 vs. Khanty-Mansiysk 2
Nikita Gusev, Khanty-Mansiysk, 1-1-2, -1, 0 PIM, 6 SOG
Regular season totals: 44 GP, 8-6-14, -6, 10 PIM
Tournament totals: 5 GP, 3-2-5, -1, 0 PIM

Ouch. Trailing by 2 goals in aggregate coming into the game, Omsk took a 2-1 series lead and a 4 goal lead in aggregate by pummeling Yugra 8-2. The two teams will square off again tomorrow in the final game of their second round set, but Yugra will have to win by a staggering 5 goals to move on in the Nadezhda Cup on aggregate. Good luck. Valiantly, Nikita Gusev had a multi-point effort in 15:57 of ice time in defeat. Omsk got a hat trick from former Flyers draft pick Stefan Ruzicka and 4 helpers from former Montreal Canadien Sergei Kostitsyn in the win.

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