The St. Louis Blues will be without a big part of their lineup as they take on the San Jose Sharks on Saturday night. Vladimir Tarasenko sustained an upper body injury in the team’s 4-0 victory over the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday night. Tarasenko had a goal and an assist in the victory.
Tarasenko (upper-body) won’t play today. Berube said the injury happened last game. #stlblues
— Jeremy Rutherford (@jprutherford) March 9, 2019
Vladimir Tarasenko Out Saturday Night
There is no word on the severity of the injury or how long Taraseko will be out. Nonetheless, this is a huge blow to the Blues. The Blues currently hold the third spot in the Central Division with 78 points. They have a three-point cushion on the Dallas Stars. But, they will have a tough match-up against the Sharks. The Stars will play the Chicago Blackhawks Saturday night, so capturing the two points will be a must for the Blues to hold their ground.
Tarasenko is second on the Blues in points with 58. His 28 goals lead the team, while his 30 assists rank third. Most importantly, the line of Brayden Schenn– Ryan O’Reilly-Tarasenko has been among the best in the league since they were put together in January. The Blues have not lost a game when the trio has played together.
When the Schenn – O’Reilly – Tarasenko line is together, the Blues are undefeated (13-0). Combined, the line-mates have 56 total points in their 13 games played together, averaging 4.3 points per contest, according to Lou Korac #STLBlues pic.twitter.com/tijw5FGbZ0
— STLSportsCentral (@stlsportscntrl) March 8, 2019
It is also no surprise that they are the top three in points for the Blues. The team has been able to get contribution from other lines, but this trio has been electric for the team. It was evident when Schenn missed seven games with a concussion. The Blues went 2-3-1 during that stretched and only scored 10 goals.
Tarasenko is currently listed as day-to-day but the team is likely hoping it won’t be long term. With 15 games to play, the Blues could use all the points they could get.
Schwartz To Top Line, Sanford Checks In
In Tarasenko’s absence, Jaden Schwartz will move up to play on the top line. It hasn’t been a strong year for Schwartz as he has missed time with injury as well. In 54 games, he has six goals and 22 assists. He will look to jump start his game with the promotion to the top line. It has been seven games since Schwartz has registered a point.
As for Zach Sanford, he will also be looking to make an impression. In 46 games, he has seven goals and seven assists. Sanford is projected to line up on the left side with with Oskar Sundqvist and Alex Steen.
Jake Allen will get the start between the pipes for the Blues. He is coming off the shutout against the Kings. It will be the first time he has started back to back since January 5th.
Embed from Getty Images