Blues acquire Pavel Buchnevich from Rangers; could Vladimir Tarasenko move be next?

GM Doug Armstrong told Vladimir Tarasenko to prepare for the season as if he was going to be a member of the St. Louis Blues. Well, he may just have traded for his replacement.

The St. Louis Blues acquired Pavel Buchnevich from the New York Rangers on Friday in exchange for fellow forward Sammy Blais and a second-round pick in the 2022 NHL Draft.

Buchnevich can become a restricted free agent on Wednesday.

Blues acquire Pavel Buchnevich

The 26-year-old Russian recorded a career-high 48 points (20 goals, 28 assists) in 54 games in 2020-21. He has 195 points (79 goals, 116 assists) in 301 career games since being selected by the Rangers in the third round of the 2013 NHL Draft.

Blais, 25, registered 15 points (eight goals, seven assists) in 36 games last season. He has 35 points (17 goals, 18 assists) in 119 career games with the Blues.

Blais, who helped St. Louis win the Stanley Cup in 2018-19, has one season remaining on a two-year, $3 million deal he signed on April 15, 2020. He is in line to be a restricted free agent next summer.

What’s next for Tarasenko?

tarasenkko trade
Aug 14, 2020; Edmonton, Alberta, CAN; St. Louis Blues forward Vladimir Tarasenko (91) skates during warmup against the Vancouver Canucks in game two of the first round of the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Rogers Place. Mandatory Credit: Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports

“[Tarasenko] has to prepare like he’s coming back to St. Louis,” Armstrong said via The Athletic. “He has to get ready to play. He is a 30-year-old. I’m sure he wants to play for a number of years in the NHL, and he has to come back and have a great season.

Heading into the expansion draft, it was reported up to 4 teams were in on him but the Blues could not get a deal done. Is there a chance for a trade to get completed tonight?

The Flyers actually were one of the teams checking in and reviewed his medical records per Elliotte Friedman. Another team that could be a destination are the Islanders. Now that St. Louis has his replacement a deal could get done.

–Field Level Media contributed to this article