Former Rangers first-round pick Vitali Kravtsov reportedly returning to KHL on two-year deal

Vitali Kravtsov
Vitali Kravtsov / POOL PHOTOS - USA TODAY Sports

Former Ranger Vitali Kravtsov's time in the NHL may be coming to an end for the time being. The young winger has reportedly reached a two-year deal with Traktor Chelyabinsk of the KHL.

New York selected Kravtsov with the ninth overall pick in the 2018 NHL Draft. The 23-year-old did not reach his full potential and his time in the Big Apple never quite panned out.

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Kravtsov made his NHL debut on April 3, 2021, against the Buffalo Sabres, and would go on to record four points (two goals, two assists) over 20 games in the 2020-2021 season.

He was then loaned to Traktor Chelyabinsk in the KHL and played 19 games for them during the 2021-2022 season. Kravtsov rejoined the Rangers this season and has played in 28 games, recording just six points (three goals, three assists).

He requested a trade on Feb. 13 after being benched by Gerard Gallant following the team's acquisition of star winger Vladimir Tarasenko.

General manager Chris Drury then shipped him off to Vancouver, where he was a regular in the lineup, but still wasn't able to find much success. Kravtsov recorded just two points in 16 games played with the Canucks.

He is a restricted free agent this offseason, so the Canucks will retain his rights, but Kravtsov will return home to the KHL for the time being.