Metallurg vs Avangard. Which contender will take the first step towards the conference finals?

The start of the semi-final confrontation of the Eastern Conference between Metallurg and Avangard is scheduled for March 18. The first game of the series will take place in Magnitogorsk, on the ice of the Metallurg Arena.

Our Expert Predictions & Analysis on Metallurg vs Avangard


Metallurg has already taken one title this season, becoming the owner of the Continental Cup, which is awarded to the best team in the regular championship. The victory went to Metallurg in a difficult struggle, Chelyabinsk Traktor was breathing in the back of Magnitogorsk for almost the entire championship, eventually finishing in second place. As for the statistical aspects of Metallurg's game, it is worth noting the team's performance here. If in the 2020/21 season Metallurg was only the eleventh team in terms of the number of goals scored, then the wards of Ilya Vorobyov finished the current regular season in first place, scoring 164 goals in 48 matches.

Metallurg hockey players carried their attacking courage to the first round of the playoffs, where they managed to score 21 goals in five matches. To some extent, Metallurg was lucky with the opponent. Barys experienced serious problems in defense throughout the season, and the first round of the playoffs was no exception. Metallurg managed to unpleasantly surprise his own fans by starting the series with a 2-3 home defeat. In the future, Metallurg no longer allowed misfires, having won four victories in a row (6-2, 5-3, 5-2 and 3-1), thereby once again confirming its status as the favorite of the current Gagarin Cup. On the eve of the first match against Avangard, Metallurg lost three. Defenders Pashnin and Grigoriev are on the injured list, Finnish goalkeeper Juho Olkinuora left the team for political reasons.


If Metallurg of the legionnaires lost only the goalkeeper, then the Omsk club has a much more serious situation. Two main defenders - Oliver Kaski and Ville Pokka also completed their performance for the Omsk club, thus putting Bob Hartley to a standstill. In fact, now the Avangard coaching staff has only 6 experienced defense players at its disposal, which can become a serious problem in a long cup distance. It got to the point that 19-year-old Timofey Davydov was announced as the sixth defender for the decisive match of the first round against Ak Bars, who spent only 38 minutes on the ice in total for the entire season.

Nevertheless, despite all the fears, it was the defense of the Omsk team, led by the Czech goalkeeper Shimon Grubets, that became the main success factor in the fight against the traditionally powerful Ak Bars. Two matches to "zero", only nine missed goals in six matches - Avangard once again confirmed its own reputation as a cup team, after an inexpressive game during the regular season, having managed to beat Ak Bars in six matches. An excellent start was set following the results of two starting matches in Kazan, where Avangard managed to win twice with a score of 2-1 and 5-2. This was followed by a 2-0 home win, but Barça managed to return to the series with two straight wins in overtime. The sixth match was decisive, in which Avangard, thanks to goals scored by Knight and Telegin, as well as 23 reflected shots by Grubets, managed to win a dry victory with a score of 2-0.

Metallurg vs Avangard


Last season, fate also brought these two teams together at the semi-final stage of the Eastern Conference. Avangard turned out to be stronger in six matches, eventually winning the Gagarin Cup. In total, in the playoffs, the rivals met three times, Avangard advanced twice (in seasons 11/12, 20/21), Metallurg had one successful streak (season 10/11). If we consider the statistics of the meetings of these teams over the entire existence of the KHL, then there is a slight advantage on the side of the Vanguard, which won 30 matches. On account of Metallurg 26 victories.

ODDs from download 1xbet

The bookmaker set the following odds for the upcoming match: Metallurg's victory - 2.29, a draw - 3.90, Avangard's victory - 2.81. In terms of expected performance, there were no special surprises, the total over 4.5 was offered with a coefficient of 1.93, the total under 4.5 - 1.85. Install the 1xbet app and place a bet on the favorite!

Game Totals Prediction

Both teams demonstrate during the season quite energy-intensive hockey, where everything is based on the optimal physical condition of the players. In this regard, the advantage is on the side of Metallurg, who ended his series against Barys on March 9, while Avangard was forced to play in a more intense mode (three matches with Ak Bars ended only in overtime) until March 12. Our prediction is Metallurg to win in regular time with odds of 2.29.

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