My old friend Denis Brel, in St. Petersburg, Russia, was at a Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) game recently between the hometown, first-place SKA (in blue) and visiting basement-dwellars Vityaz Chekhov, a game in which Chekhov upset the big shots 5-4 in a shootout.
Denis has sent along some nice photos.
The player dropping the puck (name unknown) in the middle picture is from the gold medal-winning Russian junior squad, now back with his SKA team.
In the third photo, one of St. Petersburg’s biggest stars, Alexei Yashin, whom we all know from his time in Ottawa and Long Island, is one of the featured players on the scoreboard. It also seems, from the fourth picture, that Russian fans don’t like sitting behind the net.
Ticket prices at SKA games range from 100 rubles to 500, about three to fifteen dollars. Denis reports that 100 rubles is the price of three beer, four metro tickets, one toothbrush, or the cost of one month of slow internet.
Denis also says the SKA cheerleaders are mini-celebrities around the city and many fans know their names.
This is part one, with parts two and three coming shortly.