MOSCOW, October 9 (RIA Novosti)
Three goals from lockout star signing Ilya Kovalchuk gave his KHL team SKA St. Petersburg a 4-2 come-from-behind win on the road against CSKA Moscow.
SKA went third in the Western Conference with the win in a match between the KHL's two former Soviet Army teams, as CSKA stays fifth.
The Moscow team grabbed the lead early after lockout signing Pavel Datsyuk scored from the crease from a piercing pass from Mikko Maenpaa.
The Finnish defenseman then scored a goal of his own at the start of the second period to make it 2-0 to CSKA.
Kovalchuk then transformed the game with his hat-trick as SKA stormed back into the match, with Canadian defenseman Kevin Dallman scoring the visitors' fourth.
“The most difficult thing in the match was to wake up, because we appeared without emotions on the ice in the first period and created few chances," Kovalchuk said.
“Then [coach Milos] Riha fired us up in the break and we came out with a completely different attitude. He is a very emotional coach.”
Kovalchuk moves to 11 points in six games since joining from the New Jersey Devils, while Dallman is the top scoring defenseman in the league with 12 points.
NHL lockout signings were at the fore in another match as Evgeni Malkin's Metallurg Magnitogorsk demolished Amur Khabarovsk 3-0.
Last season's NHL MVP Malkin scored the third after earlier goals from Ottawa Senators defenseman Sergei Gonchar and ex-Nashville Predators center Cal O’Reilly, while goaltender Georgy Gelashvili saw off 34 shots for the shutout.
Metallurg is now third in the Eastern Conference while Amur is 10th.
Elsewhere, Lokomotiv Yaroslavl regained the top spot in the Western Conference by defeating Barys Astana 4-2 at home.
Lokomotiv seized control of the match in the second period with three goals, Florida Panthers defenseman Dmitry Kulikov scoring his first goal since joining Lokomotiv in the lockout.
Sibir Novosibirsk toppled Traktor Chelyabinsk from the first place in the Eastern Conference after beating Traktor 2-1 in a close-fought game.
Traktor may yet recapture the lead, having played two fewer matches.
Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod ended the four-game winning streak of Avangard Omsk in spectacular style with a 7-3 victory.
Two goals for Torpedo's Swedish wing Martin Thornberg sent him joint-top of the goalscoring charts with eight so far.
Both teams are still out of the playoff zone, with Torpedo ninth in the West and last season's finalist Avangard ninth in the East.
In other games, three points from 1996 Stanley Cup winner Sandis Ozolins helped Atlant Moscow Region complete a 4-2 win over Yugra Khanty-Mansyisk.
Avtomobilist Yekaterinburg stopped its seven-game losing streak beating Metallurg Novokuznetsk 3-2 on penalty shots, but stays last in the East.
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