Frozen Pool Forensics: Vladimir Tarasenko

Cam Robinson

2016-05-20

Frozen Pool: Digging into Vladimir Tarasenko's ice time and production. 

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We continue our playoff editions of Frozen Pool Forensics by looking at one of the league’s top snipers.

Vladimir Tarasenko is no stranger to the spotlight. The lauded 24-year-old winger has long been considered one of the premier talents coming out of Russia this generation. His penchant for scoring highlight reel goals is second only to the size of his legs – there’s a reason they call him Tank.

This postseason, much has been made of the St. Louis Blues and their attempt to reach the Stanley Cup finals for the first time since 1969-70 when an expansion team was a mandatory participant and were quickly swept aside by a powerhouse Bruins’ team. Since then, the Blues have only qualified for the Conference finals three times including this current run.

With a spotlight squarely on coach Ken Hitchock and his one-year contract, a nagging storyline has been the ice-time of their team’s most dangerous offensive weapon… or lack thereof.

Tarasenko wrapped up his third full season in the league by scoring 40 goals and 74 points in 82 games. Among all forwards in the league, he scored the fourth most goals, was tied for 10th in points yet he was 50th overall in average ice time with 18:38 per contest.

Top 50 Ice Time Per Game: Forwards 2015-16 Regular Season – #40-#50


Hitchcock’s deployment of the Yaroslavl native has been questioned, harangued, sobbed over… by every Tarasenko owner in the fantasy land. Under the right circumstances, this is a player who has the juice to score 50 goals and reach that rare air of 90-plus point scorer. The key here is, under the right circumstances.   

                                                  

So he’s 50th in time on the ice, okay, but there’s no way a player of his talent would be underutilized on the man advantage, right? Right?!

Wrong. Tarasenko sat tied for 70th in average PPTOI during the regular season. Nestled in between offensive dynamos like P.A Parenteau, Radim Vrbata and Tyler Ennis.

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