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Igor Shesterkin Vitali Kravtsov

Rangers officially announce signings of Kravtsov and Shesterkin

The Rangers have officially announced the signings of top prospects Vitali Kravtsov and Igor Shesterkin.

Shesterkin, 23, signs a two-year entry level deal that includes a clause that would allow him to return to Russia if he is assigned to Hartford.

Kravtsov, 19, signs a three-year entry level deal that has a cap hit of $925,000 per season and also includes a clause that would allow him to return to Russia. (Cap Friendly)


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From the Rangers release:

  • Shesterkin: The 6-1, 187-pounder has appeared in 117 KHL games over parts of six seasons (2013-14 – 2018-19), posting an 88-16-7 record, along with a 1.68 GAA, a .935 SV%, and 27 SO. Among goaltenders who have made at least 50 career KHL appearances, Shesterkin’s career 1.68 GAA is the best in league history and his career .935 SV% is the second-best in league history. In 95 regular season appearances over the last three seasons (2016-17 – 2018-19), Shesterkin posted a 79-9-4 record, along with a 1.49 GAA, a .940 SV%, and 25 SO. He has also appeared in 16 career Gagarin Cup Playoff games, and he helped SKA St. Petersburg win the Gagarin Cup in 2016-17. Shesterkin is a two-time KHL All-Star (2016-17 and 2017-18), and he was named to the KHL’s First All-Star Team in 2016-17, as he posted a 31-4-1 record, along with a 1.64 GAA, a .937 SV%, and 8 SO in 39 appearances during the season.
  • Kravtsov: The 6-3, 181-pounder has skated in 88 career KHL regular season games over parts of three seasons (2016-17 – 2018-19), all with Traktor Chelyabinsk, registering 12 goals and 16 assists for 28 points, along with 12 penalty minutes. Kravtsov’s 28 career KHL points are the eighth-most by a teenager in league history, and his 16 career assists are the seventh-most by a teenager in league history. He received the Alexei Cherepanov Award as the KHL’s Rookie of the Year in 2017-18.

Adam Rotter: So after a long wait the Rangers finally have Igor Shesterkin coming to North America. Shesterkin is coming to North America with the understanding that Hartford and the AHL is a real possibility for this year. He didn’t leave the KHL assuming he would supplant Henrik Lundqvist or even be his back up unless he out plays Alex Georgiev. Shesterkin will get a chance in training camp to start with the Rangers but there is an argument to be made that he should go to Hartford anyway and be the starter there. Shesterkin has only really ever split time as a goalie so going to Hartford, in addition to adjusting to the North American rink and style of play, would allow him to get the majority and be a number one. The Rangers love him and his potential but he will have to earn his time between the pipes for the Rangers.

The wait for Kravtsov was much shorter though, with the lack of talent the Rangers had up front at times this season, it almost felt longer. It wouldn’t be a shock if Kravtsov begins the season with the Rangers and then goes to Hartford for most of the year before coming back up at the end like Filip Chytil did in 2017-18. He is a core piece and along with Kaapo Kakko/Jack Hughes joins a group of skilled young players that will hopefully drive the Rangers back towards playing deep into the spring and early summer.