Vladimir Tarasenko having a change of heart with St. Louis Blues?
The hockey world was buzzing when a top scorer in the NHL demanded a trade. Vladimir Tarasenko, citing issues with the St. Louis Blues handling of his shoulder injuries wanted out.
It was a rocky announcement with some back and forth between the Tarasenko camp and the Blues played through the media.
That was last July.
Flash forward to April, with the Blues on the verge of another playoff berth and we may be seeing a change of heart. As Tarasenko continues to light up the scoreboard and his team keeps posting wins the outlook on his future appears to be changing.
Vladimir Tarasenko a leader for the St. Louis Blues
Tarasenko netted two goals on Tuesday to lead the visiting Blues to their sixth straight win in a 4-2 over the Bruins.
He potted the eventual game-winner at 18:12 of the second period, highlighting his team’s two-goal frame. The team’s leading goal-scorer buried his second of the game and 28th of the season at 9:27 of the third.
“He’s doing a good job all around for us — leadership, too,” Blues coach Craig Berube said via the Athletic.
St. Louis currently holds third-place in the Central Division with 96 points. They are actually tied with the Minnesota Wild but have played an extra game. Both teams are battling for home-ice advantage in round one of the postseason.
The 30 year-old forward is big reason why the Blues have been so good. He’s having a fine season with 67 points in 66 games. His 28 goals also leads the team in that category.
Tarasenko change of heart
Tarasenko has one more year left on a deal with a $7.5 million AAV. At the time of his trade request, the Blues were not getting what they felt was a fair offer. Plus every team wanted them to eat some his contract which they refused to do.
Despite not being traded and told by his GM to show up to camp prepared to play for the Blues, Tarasenko did not sulk. Instead he did come to camp as a true professional in the best shape of his life and it’s paid off.
Back in November, after a big game in a win at home against the Kings, Tarasenko was shown love by the St. Louis fans.
“That was a special moment,” Tarasenko said via The Athletic. “It was very emotional. We always have support from the real fans. I always said it in the interviews: Our family got so much help from people from St. Louis. The support through this 10 years was very awesome.”
To date, Tarasenko has not officially rescinded his request for a trade, but word is that he may want to day.
“Vladimir Tarasenko, who has made it clear to teammates and coaches that he wants to be in St. Louis, ties his career high with his 8th game winning goal of the season,” Blues insider Andy Strickland tweeted on Wednesday.
Jeremy Rutherford, who covers the team for The Athletic is also reiterating similar sentiments. In a recent mailbag he noted that it appears that Tarasenko is looking more likely to stay now.
Listen, breaking up is hard to do as the popular classic song goes. It looks like Tarasenko’s love affair in St. Louis may not be over after all.