Neftekhimik moved into a playoff place in the Eastern Conference after securing its third successive victory. Over the course of those games, Vyacheslav Butsayev’s team has climbed from the foot of the table to eighth place.
Dinamo, meanwhile, was also seeking a third straight win as it looks to continue its recent improvement. The Latvians had won three of their last four but remained adrift at the foot of the Western Conference. Previously this season, Riga had gone down 0-4 in Nizhnekamsk.
The first period was evenly matched but a goal from Ildar Shiksatdarov 16 seconds before the intermission gave the visitor a vital advantage. It wasn’t long before Ryan Murphy added a second and the Canadian defenseman’s first in the KHL gave his team a measure of comfort.
It wasn’t over by any means. Dinamo hit back midway through the game with a goal from veteran forward Mikelis Redlihs but much of the middle stanza was dominated by the visitor. In the third session, Riga once again secured a greater share of possession and scoring chances but could not find a way past Konstantin Barulin to save the game.