Hitting the ice today as a member of the New York Rangers, Vladimir Tarasenko was skating beside Artemi Panarin and Mika Zibanejad, as many expected. The former St. Louis Blues star spoke with the media, including Mollie Walker of the New York Post after practice, and confirmed what had been reported over the last few months:
There was no chance I was staying in St. Louis. No deal was offered, so I knew I was going to be moved. I talked with Artemi and they want me here. I want to be here, too…it’s a chance to win a Cup again.
The good vibes were clear when Panarin explained how happy he was to have a long-time friend join the team. Tarasenko, of course, is only signed through the end of this season at the moment. A pending unrestricted free agent, it will be interesting to see if the Rangers will offer him the extension that never came in St. Louis.
- The Montreal Canadiens are sort of flying under the radar as a potential seller at this year’s deadline, mostly because of their lack of expiring contracts. Arpon Basu of The Athletic argues that if Josh Anderson is drawing interest, though, the team has to investigate what they could get in return. The 28-year-old is signed through the 2026-27 season and carries a cap hit of $5.5MM. It hasn’t worked out exactly as planned, with Anderson’s offensive game never really materializing past his individual power and speed. He has 25 assists in 170 games with the team, but still is so intriguing because of his heavy, made-for-the-playoffs style.
- With the Edmonton Oilers approaching something of a cap crunch, as Kailer Yamamoto gets healthy enough to return from LTIR, Chris Johnston openly wondered on TSN’s Insider Trading about whether Jesse Puljujarvi would end up on waivers. As Jason Gregor of TSN points out, if Yamamoto is coming back this weekend, today is probably the day Edmonton uses waivers.
Vlad Tarasenko pips Patrick Kane at the post. Patrick Kane now expressing disgruntlement. “That was *my* spot next to Bread! And, that BS story about my hip is overblown.” Well, Patrick, you’ve painted yourself into a bit of a corner with that last bit. If you have surgery before the end of the season, everyone will be screaming at you, “Hip story is overblown???” And, if you wait until the off-season, you’ll get all that and more. You and Pat acted like you had all the leverage in the world over the other teams pining for you. It’s still a hard cap league, where you are often told “Crap, or get off the pot!” Other teams have to get their business done on their schedule, not that of any other players. Some of us had hoped (until the hip story materialized) that you would be able to go to NYR. POOF! Up in smoke now.