The tournament started at 14:52 local time with an opening video telling about the history of the Spengler Cup. Followed by a small ceremony on the ice and an introduction video to present each participating team. Marc Gianola president of the of the tournament welcomed fans, teams and media to the 93rd edition of the Spengler Cup.
Ambri could count on the support of their fans who travelled in masses to Davos. Ufa played with their backup goaltender Andrei Kareyev who played 12 games in the KHL this season so far, posting a 92,4 save percentage. (Their 1st goalie was not nominated for the Spengler Cup). While Ambri counted on Manzato as their Starter. Manzato has been playing very strong during the last 10 games before the Christmas break, as his team managed to win 7 of them.
|Catarina de Freitas|
|Matt d'Agostini, scorer of the 2nd goal|
In a balanced fast paced first period, it was Ufa who had the first chances of the game. Tsulygin got a shot alone in the slot, but Manzato came up with a big save. Then Ambrì took over and put some pressure on Kareyev. It was Zwerger who found Sabolic all alone in the slot and he finished with a nice shot in the lower left corner.
It got very loud in the arena for the first time. Ambri did a good job in their defence zone, keeping a tight box to give Ufa only space along the boards to make passes. It was Flynn who had a very good chance at the halftime mark of the first period to extend Ambri’s lead, but Kareyev flashed his pads two times stopping the shot and rebound. Just a few seconds later Manzato stoped a shot on the goal line. Or didn’t he? The referees Stricker (SUI) and Romasko (RUS) went consult the video to verify that the puck didn’t cross the line.
12:01 first PP for Ambri after a tripping penalty to Gareyev. Ambrì won the following faceoff and immediately had a couple of shots. Müller had another good opportunity but Andrei said no. In the following counter attack Ambri took 2min for interference. D’Agostini with a solo along the boards shorthanded made it to the front of the net of Ufa from where Chris Egli passed it up to the blueline and Fora hammered it towards the net where just named D’Agostini redirected it for 2-0 lead
It was Marco Müller who scored Ambri’s first PP-Goal early in the second period of a nice pass from Dominic Zwerger. Ufa was active but couln’t get many shots towards Manzato and the more time passed Ambri started to control the game. They attacked Ufa early and forced them to play risky passes. At 1:21 before the end of the 2nd
period it was Lisovets who finished off a nice cross ice pass from Omark to bring some hope back to his team. 3-1 after 40 minutes.
|Catarina de Freitas|
|The whole crowd sang for HCAP|
Fischer with a horrible backpass fed directly to the stick of Soshnikov, which left him alone in front of Manzato, but he couldn’t burry it. Ufa then with more shots and pressure on Manzato. After 4:10 in the 3rd period Ambri seemed to have scored another goal, but the referees waved it off for goalie-interference, resulting in a 2min PP for the Russian team. Manzato continued his strong performance, leaving the attackers of Ufa desperate. As if that was not enough, they were also unlucky on a 3 on 1 attack, where again Soshnikov hits the post. A very strong performance of Ufa’s number 90. He had a team leading 8 shots on goal.
Nikolai Tsulygin decided to pull his goalie with 2:22 left to play. Again they had a few good chances, but the puck didn’t find the back of the net. The Biancoblù secured the win with a technical goal
, that was awarded after a Russian player knocked the net loose. The sold out arena celebrated Ambri’s victory by singing La Montanara. A good start to the 93rd edition of the Spengler Cup.