Kravets to coach Dragons

1 May 2024

May 1 saw the KHL trade window reopen – and the Dragons were quick to confirm a key acquisition for next season. Kunlun’s new head coach will be Mikhail Kravets, who spent last season with Avangard Omsk.


Kravets, 60, is no stranger to the KRS organization: in 2017/18 he was the inaugural head coach of KRS Heiliongjang in the VHL. That was part of the first wave of the club’s expansion as we grew from a lone KHL team to representatives in lower league, junior and women’s hockey. It wasn’t the easiest of campaigns for a brand-new club, but Kravets’ team picked up 58 points in 52 games. That remains the best PPG ratio in Red Star’s brief VHL history.

After leaving the Dragons’ lair, Mikhail returned to his native St. Petersburg and divided the 2018/19 season behind the benches of SKA’s MHL and VHL teams. Then he stepped up to the KHL for his first permanent role as head coach in the big league with Vityaz. In his first season he steered the team to the playoffs before the pandemic halted play. The second year, despite winning more games in regulation, Vityaz narrowly missed post season.

Kravets moved on to Khabarovsk, where he replaced Vladimir Vorobyov as head coach at the end of September. He helped the team improve on a poor start to the season but once again had to settle for a playoff near-miss. Then came Omsk, initially as assistant to Dmitry Ryabykin – until the Dragons came to town and scorched the new G-Drive Arena with an emphatic win. Ryabykin lost his job and Kravets was put in charge of the Hawks. Mikhail led a recovery that took Avangard all the way to the Eastern Conference final before losing out to Ak Bars. This season he lifted Avangard to second in the East behind eventual champion Metallurg. However, he paid the price for a 1-7 loss to Lokomotiv in the playoffs and was dismissed from his post after two games of round two. In total, Kravets has coached 311 KHL games, winning 160 of them.

The club has signed a one-year agreement with our new head coach and looks forward to a successful season under his guidance.

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Kunlun Red Star