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Tarasenko Joins Blues at Informal Skate

Blues' forward arrived from Russia on Thursday evening; skated on Friday

Friday, 01.11.2013 / 12:24 PM / St Louis Blues - News
By Chris Pinkert  - St. Louis Blues
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Tarasenko Joins Blues at Informal Skate
Blues forward Vladimir Tarasenko joined the team for an informal skate at the Ice Zone at the St. Louis Outlet Mall on Friday.


HAZELWOOD, MO - Vladimir Tarasenko has arrived.

The Blues’ forward landed at Lambert International Airport just before 6 p.m. on Thursday night and was on the ice with his teammates for Friday’s informal skate at the Ice Zone at the St. Louis Outlet Mall (formerly St. Louis Mills).

Tarasenko is the last of the Blues’ players to arrive in St. Louis in anticipation of the 2012-13 season, which is expected to begin later this month. The team has been holding informal skates daily at the Ice Zone in preparation for Training Camp.

“It’s a precamp skate, so it’s very different from what camp will be and what games will be. But from what I pick up, (Tarasenko) is very intelligent,” said Alex Steen. “He doesn’t seem shy to talk and that’s very important. He’s a very good hockey player.”

Fans turned out in droves for a chance to catch a glimpse of the Blues’ 2010 first-round draft pick (16th overall), who according to Head Coach Ken Hitchcock, will likely start camp on a line with Andy McDonald and Steen.

“I watched those guys. They skated out here as a group and the two or three times they skated together, they looked terrific,” Hitchcock told reporters back in October. “And both Alex and Andy had really embraced Vladi, and the whole team embraced Vladi…we really feel confident that it would be a good combination to start and go with.”

“I think he’s a pretty complete player,” added McDonald after skating with Tarasenko on Friday. “His awareness, his ability to get the puck, he’s got a great shot…just the awareness thing is a huge factor. Call it awareness or call it hockey sense, but your ability to read the play, where your teammates are around you, where the defenders are…players like that make it easy to play with.”

Tarasenko, who signed his first professional contract in June, was originally introduced to St. Louis in September. In 31 KHL games this season, the 21-year-old forward has 14 goals and 17 assists (31 points). He also boasts a plus/minus rating of plus-16.

He will wear No. 91.

“He doesn’t miss the net, the puck is on the net, he comes fast, the puck is on his stick and it’s gone…he’s a good offensive player," Hitchcock said. "The rest of the game, we’re going to teach him, and that’s going to be long-term, but if he can do the things offensively that we think he’s capable of, then he’s going to contribute to our hockey club and help us a lot.”

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 ANA 48 32 10 6 143 124 70
2 NSH 46 31 10 5 141 107 67
3 STL 46 29 13 4 148 111 62
4 CHI 47 30 15 2 148 108 62
5 WPG 49 26 15 8 138 122 60
6 SJS 48 25 17 6 131 132 56
7 VAN 46 26 17 3 124 118 55
8 CGY 48 26 19 3 140 126 55
9 LAK 47 20 15 12 129 126 52
10 COL 49 20 18 11 128 141 51
11 DAL 47 21 19 7 146 154 49
12 MIN 47 21 20 6 130 138 48
13 ARI 47 16 25 6 108 160 38
14 EDM 48 12 27 9 110 160 33

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
V. Tarasenko 46 24 23 23 47
A. Steen 44 15 25 8 40
K. Shattenkirk 46 8 31 17 39
J. Schwartz 39 16 21 15 37
D. Backes 45 16 17 5 33
J. Lehtera 45 9 21 16 30
T. Oshie 38 13 15 11 28
A. Pietrangelo 46 4 23 0 27
P. Stastny 38 9 16 5 25
P. Berglund 45 6 9 -1 15
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
B. Elliott 13 5 2 .930 1.86
J. Allen 13 5 2 .900 2.65

 
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