Vasiliev brings offensive flair

Vladimir VasilievDEC.6 -- Second coaching change took place last Wednesday in RSL, as Sergei Paramonov was axed by struggling Mechel Chelyabinsk.

Former Khimik Voskresenks and Russia coach Vladimir Vasiliev was named Paramonov's successor.

Chelyabinsk side was up to a poor, albeit not awful start. The team was out of relegation zone by the Karjala Cup break with a 6-11-3 record. However six straight losses in November pushed Mechel deep towards the bottom of the table.

Mechel ended six-game loosing skid with a win against Viktor Tikhonov's CSKA last Tuesday, but it wasn't enough to keep Paramonov on the job, as team management felt that the change was needed.

Paramonov was a long time assistant coach for Mechel. He took over the head position last summer, when Chelyabinsk side parted ways with Nikolai Makarov.

Vladimir Vasiliev is well respected among colleagues and players in Russia. He's known as the old school veteran who prefers creative approach to the game and relies heavily upon offense instead of a strict defensive approach many Superleague coaches value.

In his first game behind Mechel's bench last night Vasiliev gave Chelyabinsk fans a slick preview of the type of game they should expect from the team in the near future.

Vasiliev's squad outgunned Amur in a spirited and spectacular contest.

Igor Varitsky scored twice to lead Mechel's offense. Vladimir Stulov, Evgeny Galkin and Mikhail Paramonov also scored for the home team, which went 3 for 6 on the power play.

-- Max Dostoevsky