Often one of the (small) consolation prizes that exist when a player misses the Stanley Cup playoffs is the selection to their home nation’s IIHF World Championships team. Unfortunately for Vladimir Tarasenko, there will be no coda to this year’s season. His final movement came Saturday night during the first period when he hit the boards while checking Nathan MacKinnon of the Colorado Avalanche.
It didn’t look like much, but Tarasenko skated off, sat on the bench before heading to the locker room, and did not return for the rest of the game. He was later seen leaving in a sling.
In their end of season interviews, Doug Armstrong and Mike Yeo informed the press that Tarasenko suffered a dislocated shoulder and will require surgery. He should be in playing condition in four to six months, which should be in time for training camp if recovery goes well. Tarasenko had this to say about the injury today:
“The longer you play, the better you can find out if you’re seriously hurt or not,” said Tarasenko, his left arm in a sling. “So when it (pain) didn’t go away for like 10-15 seconds, you know it’s something serious. Of course I’m really upset it happened in the most important game of the year. It’s really bad feelings to be in the locker room when the guys try to fight for a spot.”
Had the Blues made the playoffs, they’d have to face the Nashville Predators without their best player, and would have to try to beat the defending Western Conference champions and current President Trophy winners with a line-up shuffle.