The Journal Gazette
Friday, April 30, 2021 1:50 pm

Former K's star Shafranov wins Gagarin Cup as assistant coach

JUSTIN A. COHN | The Journal Gazette

Konstantin Shafranov, who won three championships as a player with the Komets and was an assistant coach for 2 1/2 seasons, has won another title -- with Avangard Omsk of the Kontinental Hockey League.

Shafranov is an assistant coach to former NHL coach Bob Hartley. Avangard defeated CSKA Moscow for the Gagarin Cup this week. The KHL is considered the second-highest level of professional hockey in the world behind the NHL.

Shafranov, 52, played seven seasons with the Komets in both incarnations of the International Hockey League between 1995 and 2010. In 350 regular-season games with Fort Wayne, he totaled 159 goals and 362 points. In 48 playoff games, he had 15 goals and 44 points, and helped the Komets to Turner Cups in 2008, 2009 and 2010.

Also in his playing career, he played for the NHL’s St. Louis Blues, for Kazakhstan in the Olympics and was a formidable player in Russian leagues.

He was an assistant coach to Gary Graham from midway through the 2013-14 season to September 2016, before he left to attend the University of Omsk, take coaching training courses and put him on a path to coaching in the KHL.

He’d been an assistant for Amur Khabarovsk and Avtomobilist Yekaterinburg before last year joining Avangard Omsk, which has a roster that includes Ilya Kovalchuk. Dmitry Ryabykin is also an assistant to Hartley, who won a Stanley Cup coaching the Colorado Avalanche.

After Shafranov left the Komets, they went without a full-time assistant coach for a season, using then-captain Jamie Schaafsma as a player/assistant coach. But in 2017, the Komets hired Ben Boudreau to be Graham’s full-time assistant and Boudreau replaced Graham as head coach in 2019.

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