Bold predictions for NHL season from the boys
St. Louis Blues head coach Craig Berube is expecting Vladimir Tarasenko to open the season with the team, despite the winger requesting a trade earlier this summer.
Tarasenko, who was left unprotected in the Seattle Expansion Draft, asked to be traded in July.
"I expect 'Vladi' to play for us," Berube told The Cam & Strick Podcast last week. "I'm going to treat him like every other player. And yeah, he asked to be traded, and things happen, but again, you know, we want Vladi to play good hockey for us. … He's going to have a role on the team like he always has, we'll deal with it internally and we'll go from there.
"You only can control so many things and there's things you can't control sometimes. So, you just focus on what you can control. And that's what we're going to do."
Tarasenko, who has been limited to just 34 games over the past two seasons due to injury, has two years left on his current contract at an average value of $7.5 million with a no-trade clause. He had four goals and 14 points in 24 games last season, adding two goals in four playoff games.
Since being selected by the Blues 16th overall in the 2010 draft, Tarasenko has 218 goals and 223 assists over nine seasons and 531 games. He won a Stanley Cup with the Blues in 2019.