For the last few years hopeful Blues fans boasted of the next great scorer for their local hockey team. Many tempered those dreams with the reality that they might not ever see him. Opposing defensemen in the NHL can relate to the second half because they are having a tough time seeing him too.
A scraping skate, a slapping stick, a fog horn. These are all things defensemen are hearing…along with the name of January‘s rookie of the month, Vladimir Tarasenko.
With five goals and four assists in his first seven professional North American hockey games, the twenty-one year old Russian winger has proven difficult to contain. Just ask Kyle Quincey of the Detroit Red Wings who could not have looked more outmatched in skill, composure, jersey color, and overall talent.[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9MgLai7o25o?rel=0&w=560&h=315]
Even more impressive is how vital the freshman has been to his team. Tarasenko was held scoreless in one game in January and it was the only Blues loss of the month.
Shooting seems to be almost second nature for one of the few new skaters for the Blues. More accurately, it is his ability to charge the net shooting as Pekka Rinne discovered.[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gj8aYn2BbNw?rel=0&w=560&h=315]
Or maybe its his innate ability to not give up on a play as James Wisniewski can attest to.[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zvbUwramlow?rel=0&w=560&h=315]
Either way, the kudos keep on coming for the kid. This could be the first of many rookie accolades this season.