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Pavel Buchnevich enjoys a homecoming at The Garden in NYC

Buchnevich faced his former team on their home ice on Wednesday night.

NHL: St. Louis Blues at New York Rangers Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Pavel Buchnevich may play for the St. Louis Blues as a forward and at right-wing, but he hasn’t forgotten about his former team the New York Rangers, who drafted him 75th overall in the 2013 NHL Draft.

Buchnevich, a Russian native, was born into an athletic family. His father, Andrey, worked as a youth soccer coach, and his mother, Yelena Razumova, was a competitive skier. Sports run in the Buchnevich family’s blood.

Buchnevich began his hockey career in his native Russia. He played for Severstal Cherepovets and SKA Saint Petersburg, both in the KHL. He followed his dreams of becoming a professional hockey player in the NHL and ended up in New York City. And, in case you missed the memo, NYC leads the nation in Russian Americans with about 600,000 residents.

At one point, Buchnevich’s 50.82 Corsi percentage ranked first on the Rangers’ roster, while his 51.85 expected-goal-for-percentage ranked third; but he fell into a slump. He was also suspended for high-sticking the Washington Capitals forward, Anthony Mantha.

Keep in mind the Rangers have missed the playoffs for three of their last five seasons, since 2016-17. Buchnevich wasn’t the only Ranger at fault. However, NYR traded him to the Blues in exchange for Sammy Blais and a 2022 second-round draft pick as part of a shift in team identity. He then signed a four-year, $23.2 million contract extension with the Blues.

Will the Rangers regret trading Buchnevich? Only time will tell, but their fans don’t seem thrilled. Their players didn’t seem happy about it over the off-season, either.

Buchnevich is making a name for himself in St. Louis. He’s an offensive force. He contributes to both the Blues’ offense and penalty kill.

The Blues acquired Buchnevich and Brandon Saad last summer for a reason. The team wanted to bolster their offense with two sharpshooting forwards.