St. Louis Blues’ Vladimir Tarasenko Named NHL First Star of the Week


In a week where he certainly showed signs of emerging as a legitimate star, 22-year-old St. Louis Blues forward Vladimir Tarasenko has been named the NHL’s First Star of the Week.

In three games this past week, Tarasenko had an NHL-leading five goals, including a hat trick on Tuesday in Dallas and a two-goal effort against Colorado on Saturday. He also had an assist in Dallas, helping out his linemate Jori Lehtera and inspiring a pair of catchy nicknames: “Lehterasenko” for the duo of Tarasenko and Lehtera which has looked so promising thus far, and the “STL line” for the trio of Alexander Steen (a powerful scoring force in his own right), Tarasenko, and Lehtera.

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After 10 games, Tarasenko now leads the Blues with six goals and 11 points. It should be interesting what he can do going forward, as this could be the first year where he really gets in a good rhythm and puts it together. In his rookie year, which was already shortened by the lockout, he had a decent chunk of his season cut out by a concussion and was limited after he returned, finishing with eight goals in 38 games. Last year, Tarasenko had a bit of a sophomore slump and also had to deal with a hand injury, finishing with 21 goals and 22 assists in 64 games. With the progress that he’s shown in the early part of this season, it’s a safe bet that Tarasenko will have a career year if he stays healthy.

Tarasenko and the Blues will play again on Monday night, facing the New York Rangers on the road and looking to avenge a 3-2 loss in the season opener.