Vladimir Tarasenko is back on the ice a little earlier than expected in his recovery from shoulder surgery.
The Russian forward told stlouisblues.com on Monday that he has been cleared by team doctors to skate with limited contact, has been shooting plenty of pucks, and is following doctors’ orders throughout the long rehabilitation process.
“I need to talk about it with the doctors more, but I’m cleared to skate with the group, but only with some contact right now,” Tarasenko said after skating with a few teammates. “But I can shoot. I feel great and I feel stronger. I’m ready for the season.”
Tarasenko was injured in the regular-season finale against the Colorado Avalanche and underwent reconstructive surgery on his left shoulder shortly after. It was unclear if he’d be ready to go by the start of the 2018-19 campaign, with Blues general manager Doug Armstrong announcing a recovery timeline of four to six months and indicating he wouldn’t be re-evaluated until September’s training camp.
The 26-year-old, who has led the Blues in goals in each of the past four seasons, tallied 33 goals and 33 assists in 80 games this past season, good for second on the team in points behind Brayden Schenn.