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(Updates) The Vitali Kravtsov situation after his KHL team was eliminated

3/12/19| Kravtsov’s KHL GM won’t terminate his contract before it expires so it is unlikely he joins the Rangers this season. (Eronko)

3/10/19 | Larry Brooks writes that Kravtsov’s contract ends on April 30 and that it is not yet known if he will come to North America before the end of the season. (NY Post)

3/5/19 | 9:44AM: Kravtsov told a reporter in Russia that he is unsure at the moment whether he will join the Rangers this season. (Eronko)



8:30AM: Vitali Kravtsov’s KHL team was eliminated from the playoffs and reports indicate that he may soon be signing his entry-level contract with the Rangers.

If Kravtsov plays in one NHL game this season he will burn the first-year of his entry-level contract but the Rangers would not need to protect him in the 2021 Seattle expansion draft unless he plays 10 or more games. (Sportsnet)

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Kravtsov’s final numbers in the KHL this season were:

  • Regular Season: 50 games – 8 goals, 13 assists, 114 shots, 15:31 per game
  • Playoffs: 4 games – 2 assists, 12 shots, 16:35 per game

Jeff Gorton said last week that the Rangers were having discussions internally about what to do with Kravtsov but that they want him in North America as soon as possible.

Larry Brooks writes that it isn’t yet known if Kravtsov’s contract expires with his teams elimination or the end of the KHL playoffs. (NY Post)

Brooks notes that the Rangers could sign Kravtsov to an Amateur Try-Out and assign him to Hartford without starting his entry-level contract. (NY Post)

From the Rangers Prospect Reports:

12/3: “On a struggling team, filled with injuries and coaching changes, Vitali has been a bright light. His vision, playmaking ability, and dynamic skill and skating style are on display every game.” – Rangers Director of European Scouting Nickolai Bobrov on Vitali Kravtsov

12/31: “I dream of playing at Madison Square Garden. I was given a tour there – the place is legendary.” – Vitali Kravtsov

Adam Rotter: I’m not entirely sure it’s the best thing for the Rangers to bring Kravtsov over to North America for the last month of the season. He’s just played a full-year in the KHL, played in the World Juniors and will hopefully get a spot with Russia at the World Championships. The Rangers, in any situation, won’t put themselves in a position to where they need to protect Kravtsov in the expansion draft, so the only contract related issue would be burning off an entry-level year. Burning off an entry-level year isn’t a huge deal but it would put the Rangers in a situation where Kravtsov would join Lias Andersson, Filip Chytil, Brett Howden and Libor Hajek in being RFAs. It would certainly be exciting to see Kravtsov join the Rangers but I’m just not sure they are going to bring him over now. I think that the plan for Kravtsov could be to sign him, bring him over to practice with the Rangers and then maybe play a few games in Hartford. That would allow everyone to see Kravtsov and work with him a little without burning any time off his contract. I’d also imagine that the Rangers would like to set a plan for Kravtsov’s offseason work before development camp and then keep him in the area following camp to work with Ben Prentiss.