December 4, 2008

Dinamo from Minsk

Dinamo Minsk vs.
Dinamo Riga

Dinamo Riga’s next opponent is another Dinamo, only from Minsk, Belarus.

Dinamo Minsk was formed in the far 1946 as Torpedo Minsk and had several name changes throughout the years. The club got the name Dinamo only in 1977. In 1993 it was again changed – to Tivali Minsk. The club went bankrupt in 2001.

During its first part of existence ( 1946 to 2001) Dinamo played in the Soviet Union’s first and second leagues, later, when Belarus got its independence – in the Belarusian Open league (aka Belarusian Extraleague). Dinamo became the winner of Visshaya Liga (USSR/Russia’s second league) four times – in 1970, 1977, 1996 and 1997, and was the Belarus champion of 1993-1995 and 2000.

The club was brought back in 2004 under the final name of Dinamo and became the champion of Extraleague in 2007. In March, 2008 KHL confirmed the Belarusian club's inclusion in the league. Fate determined the old new Dinamo to play in Bobrov’s Divison.

Minsk was getting ready for KHL. Paul Gardner was assigned as head coach, but something didn’t please the club management and Mr. Gardner was dismissed already in the pre-season. Jimmy Hughes became the new trainer. But Dinamo’s results weren’t the best and he too left his post in October. So the new and current coach of the team is Vasiliy Spiridonov.

Right now Dinamo Minsk is placed 22nd in the overall standings with 26 points in 30 games; 63 goals for and 108 against. It’s one of the worst teams in all components, including getting points at home – only 12 out of a possible 42. Still it’s a very unyielding team.

Dinamo Minsk doesn’t score much, but still has its leaders: forward Yaroslav Chupris has the most points – 18 (7+11), after Yaroslav is Andrei Mikhalev with 13 (9+4) pts, Sergey Demagin (6+4), Viktor Andrushenko (3+7); the most scoring defensemen are Ben Klymer – 11 (2+9), Andrei Antonov – 8 (4+4), Brayan Myuir – 7 (1+6).

Goalkeeper Andy Chiodo is considered as number one – 21 games, 87.7 %, the second goaltender is Matus Kostur - 10 games, 85.3%. Dinamo has one more keeper – Vitali Koval, who was injured so had only 5 games, but he’s ok and is already playing. It’s possible he will be in the net tomorrow.

Of course, Dinamo Riga looks more preferable and is stronger “on paper”, but in practice – anything is possible. It won’t be easy tomorrow, but I think, Riga will get points. It depends on how fresh our team will be after the previous game and how will Minsk show itself – will it be full of strength or withered – Dinamo Minsk’s last game was on November 29, where the team lost in shot-outs to Metallurg Magnitogorsk.

P.S. The two Dinamo’s have already met each other in the pre-season – Riga won 5:1, but in the first KHL match between these teams Riga celebrated a 8:5 victory.

Pictures from KHL and Dinamo Riga official websites.

As it seems, there will be no video broadcast here in Latvia, neither there will be online live video feed, if there will be, this will be the first place where you will find live video feed.

Stay Tuned.

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