Report: Vitali Kravtsov will not be joining the Rangers organization, per NY Post

vitali kravtsov
May 5, 2021; New York, New York, USA; Vitek Vanecek #41 of the Washington Capitals blocks the net against Vitali Kravtsov #74 of the New York Rangers during the third period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Bennett/POOL PHOTOS-USA TODAY Sports

Larry Brooks of the NY Post is reporting that Vitali Kravtsov will do his off-season training in Russia after his team was eliminated from the Gagarin Cup Playoffs in the KHL.

Additionally, Brooks added that the plan is for him to arrive in NY early in the summer in preparation for the next training camp.

Vitali Kravtsov will stay in Russia

Kravtsov, 22, was eliminated along with Traktor from the playoffs on Monday by Metallurg in the Eastern Conference Final.

The New York Rangers selected him in the 2018 Draft, 9th overall. Kravtsov’s situation and fallout with the organization is well documented and him not joining the Rangers isn’t shocking.

In October, Kravtsov requested a trade after refusing to join the Wolf Pack in the AHL before bolting to Russia. That was the second time he’s done so with the first being in 2019, when he used his European Out Clause.

Before he left in 2019, then GM of the Pack Chris Drury reportedly admonished him and called him a quitter.

This season was a good one for Kravtsov in the KHL. In 19 regular season contests, he potted 6 goals and 7 assists for 13 points. During the playoffs, he added 7 goals and a total of 10 points in 15 games.

Despite the plan being for him to join the team in the summer to prepare for camp, he is expected to be traded at the NHL Draft in June for at most a second-round pick.

Kravtsov’s troubled history with the Rangers

vitali kravtsov
Apr 27, 2021; New York, NY, USA; Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen #1 of the Buffalo Sabres makes the second period save on Vitali Kravtsov #74 of the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden on April 27, 2021 in New York City. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Bennett/Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports

The Rangers selection of Kravtsov was considered a reach with many anticipating the team to pick Oliver Wahlstrom, who is now with the New York Islanders.

Kravtsov hasn’t been too excited about being part of the Rangers organization and publicly went on record that he’d didn’t see himself as a fit.

In a feature on Traktor’s website in November 2020, Vitali Kravtsov said: “Count how many players they have at my position. There’s plenty to chose from. Right now there’s no place on paper for me.”

Eventually, he came over from Russia and played in 20 games for the big club at the end of 2021 where he recorded 2 goals and 2 assists.

At the start of this season’s camp he reportedly had some conditioning issues which led to him not making the team. Once he was cut and sent the Hartford it started the chain reaction that landed us here.

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