, who agreed to an entry-level deal with the Blues earlier in the summer and finally arrived in St. Louis last week
, took a few minutes to participate in a Q&A with stlouisblues.com before his introductory press conference last Thursday. Most of his answers were translated by fellow Russian player Evgeny Grachev
or his interpreter, Irina Sandler.
Tarasenko was drafted by the Blues in 2010 with a first-round pick (16th overall). He has spent the last few seasons in Russia's Kontinental Hockey League, where he has scored 100 points (52 goals and 48 assists) in 176 games.
Below is the complete Q&A, in approximately 91 seconds.
STLOUISBLUES.COM: You’ve been in St. Louis for several days now. What are your early impressions of the city?
91: I like the city so far, but I haven’t had a chance to explore much. I’ve basically just been training and going back home to rest.
STLB: Do you remember what it felt like to be drafted by the Blues back in 2010?
91: I was really excited and happy.
STLB: When you captained Russia’s World Junior Championship team, you forced overtime after being down 3-0 in the third period. You scored the game-tying goal and had an assist to help Russia win the Gold Medal. What was that experience like?
91: It was a great game, we had an excellent team and we’re very happy that we had the fortune to win.
STLB: You’ve spent the last few seasons in the Kontinental Hockey League. How good is that league and do you feel like that has prepared you for the NHL?
91: It’s an excellent league and it’s developing rapidly. The guys that are currently playing in the league are getting excellent experience.
STLB: Describe what it’s been like to skate with some of your new teammates?
91: It was hard in the beginning, but the guys have welcomed me very well. It’s going very well right now.
STLB: What are some of the biggest adjustments you will need to make in preparation for the North American game?
91: I just need to adjust to the different size of the rink.
STLB: Ever since being drafted, Blues fans have called you “The Tank.” Do you like that nickname, and if not, what do you prefer to be called?
91: I’m not used to having a nickname. People refer to me as Vladi.