Preparations pick up pace ? the KHL week in review

Last week saw the KHL announce its schedule for the coming season â€” with all the action set to start on September 2. That means it’s high time the pre-season preparations hit top gear, and Lokomotiv Yaroslavl became the first tournament winner of the summer.

KHL schedule confirmed

Friday brought the news we’ve all been waiting for, with the KHL’s Board of Directors confirming that 23 teams â€” everyone except Admiral Vladivostok â€” will compete in the 2020/2021 season. The fixture list was also unveiled, with the action starting on Sep. 2 with a clash between the teams that topped the two conferences last regular season. That means CSKA vs Ak Bars in Moscow to start us off on a 690-game marathon that runs until Feb. 27. Each team will have 60 games, playing every opponent home and away once and making up&nbsp

Can Kvartalnov win his first Gagarin Cup? Ak Bars season preview

The most successful team in the KHL era, Ak Bars expects nothing less than the best. It’s been a relatively quiet summer in Kazan this year and there’s every reason for quiet confidence ahead of the new season.

Last season

Consistency was the word as Ak Bars finished on top of the Eastern Conference. After a narrow loss to CSKA in its opening game of the season, the Kazan team won its next games and never looked back. Dmitry Kvartalnov’s men would not suffer back-to-back losses until late December, and that three-game skid was mitigated by two games going to a shoot-out amid the disruption and travel occasioned by a trip to Davos as part of the KHL World Games program.

With 44 wins in 62 games, Ak Bars finished just one point behind Continental Cup winner CSKA. Notably, the team was nine points clear of Bar