Vladimir Tarasenko is one of the big names on the market after his relationship with the St Louis Blues became damaged to the point of no return. Lou Lamoriello and the New York Islanders seem like a clear landing spot for the winger.
We’ve already discussed at length why it would work but there is always one question that comes back, how healthy is Tarasenko?
Well, as Jeremy Rutherford reported in his latest article in The Athletic (Subscription Required), Tarasenko is fully healthy. Dr. Peter Millett, who performed the surgery, confirmed that his shoulder is “rock solid”.
Millet has operated on Christian McCaffrey, Colin Kaepernick, Josh Anderson, Yanni Gourde, Max Domi, Erik Johnson, and Nikita Zadorov just to name a few.
He went on to say that Tarasenko’s shoulder is “stable and strong” and that he will be “100% ready” for the upcoming season.
With Tarasenko exposed to the Seattle Kraken, will they grab the 29-year-old goal scorer? And is there a chance that they take him to flip him? Absolutely.
He has two years remaining at $7.5 million but only has 34 games over the last two years. Before that, when healthy, five straight seasons of 30+ goals for the Blues. He’s the kind of player that Lou Lamoriello has tried to acquire on multiple occasions.
Most recently, in the Artemi Panarin sweepstakes. He’s the kind of player who can make a good top-six great with his strong shot, as displayed here against the New York Islanders.
Also, Vladimir Tarasenko would add a major goal-scoring threat to a power play. He’s scored 8 power-play goals or more in a season four times in his career. For reference, the Islanders were 20th in the league in power play percentage last season.
My prediction? The Blues select Tarasenko and flip him to the Islanders for Jordan Eberle, Kieffer Bellows, and a future draft pick. Lou has to have something up his sleeve with the protected list, we should find out more tomorrow.