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Vitali Kravtsov

Rangers to loan Vitali Kravtsov to KHL

2PM: The Rangers have confirmed that Kravtsov has been loaned to Traktor.

Chris Drury said in a statement, “After discussions with Vitali and his representation, we decided a loan to Traktor was in the best interests of both him and the organization. We think very highly of Vitali and the Rangers development staff will continue to work with him to reach our mutual goal of him some day being a New York Ranger.”

Kravtsov said in a statement, “I want to thank the Rangers for working with me, and appreciate the open and honest conversations we have had during this process. While this has been a challenging time for me personally, I believe having the opportunity to return to Traktor and work on my game is the best thing for me right now. My main focus is getting better every day to continue towards my goal of playing hockey for the New York Rangers.”


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1:27PM: The Rangers are working on loaning Vitali Kravtsov to Traktor in the KHL. (Brooks)

Kravtsov has been in Russia since refusing to report to Hartford.

Larry Brooks tweets “from what I can glean, never say never to possible reunion with Blueshirts…”

For more on Kravtsov, CLICK HERE.

Adam Rotter: If his “main focus is getting better every day to continue towards my goal of playing hockey for the New York Rangers” then why doesn’t he come back to North America, play in Hartford and work to get called up?

Usually an announcement like this would just state the facts and not feature any quotes, so those are interesting to read, but I don’t know if they mean anything. I don’t doubt that Chris Drury wants Kravtsov to be a Ranger, but I do still have doubts about Kravtsov wanting to be a Ranger long-term. I guess we will see how things go in the KHL and if he can drive his value up, but the last time they went through this and loaned him to the KHL things didn’t go well over there and that is when he returned and went to Hartford. So we will see. Maybe at the end of the KHL season he decides to come back, maybe a trade happens in the interim or maybe this just keeps playing out until the draft.

As of now this is following the Lias Andersson path of refusal/leaving Hartford, being suspended, being loaned to a team in his native country. The Rangers tried to make peace with Andersson and bring him back, or at least to training camp, for the bubble, like they did with Kravtsov, but Andersson refused and was traded for the pick that was used on Will Cuylle. Kravtsov will likely have a chance to come back if he wants it, but he may only be playing nice now to get playing and hopefully spark a trade.