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Tarasenko expects to be on ice for start of Blues training camp

Forward says he feels better after recovering from shoulder injury, offseason knee surgery

by Tom Gulitti @TomGulittiNHL / Staff Writer

CHICAGO -- Vladimir Tarasenko said he will be ready for the start of training camp next week after recovering from injuries to his left shoulder and left knee sustained during the St. Louis Blues' run to their first Stanley Cup championship.

"Now everything feels fine," Tarasenko said Thursday at the NHL Player Media Tour. "I'm still recovering, but I feel strong, I feel good and ready to go."

Tarasenko led the Blues with 33 goals and was second with 68 points in 76 regular-season games last season. The 27-year-old forward had 17 points (11 goals, six assists) in 26 Stanley Cup Playoff games.

Tarasenko said he dislocated his left shoulder when he was hit in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final against the Boston Bruins.

"My shoulder popped out in Game 2 in the second period," he said. "They put it back in, and I was able to finish the game."

Tarasenko, who had surgery to repair his dislocated left shoulder following the 2017-18 season, did not require surgery this time. He's hopeful it will not be a recurring issue.

"It's just a bad accident," Tarasenko said. "But it's not much comfort playing with a shoulder dislocated five minutes ago."

Tarasenko had been playing through a left-knee injury that required arthroscopic surgery after the Cup Final, which St. Louis won in seven games. The Blues announced the procedure June 25.

"We did some MRIs and decided to do [surgery]," Tarasenko said.

With a short offseason following the longest playoff run of his seven-season NHL career, Tarasenko said his recovery didn't impact his training that much.

"We had to take a rest anyway for a month," he said. "I was in Miami, so I started doing some light workouts. I always was in touch with the therapists and the doctors and physical trainers from St. Louis and worked on the program."

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