ST. LOUIS – One of the most decorated players in St. Louis Blues history is on the move.

The St. Louis Blues have traded forward Vladimir Tarasenko to the New York Rangers, marking the end of an 11-year-run in St. Louis.

The Blues acquired a conditional 2023 first-round draft pick, a 2024 fourth-round draft pick, forward Sammy Blais, and defenseman Hunter Skinner from the New York Rangers. Defenseman Niko Mikkola is also on the move to New York.

Tarasenko evolved into a force over the last decade-plus, though his recent seasons have been riddled with injuries and personal frustrations with Blues management.

A 2019 Stanley Cup champion, Tarasenko was the franchise’s active leader in goals (262) and among the top ten in Blues history for points (553), hat tricks (5) and numerous other advanced scoring categories. The Blues also made playoffs in nine of their ten seasons with Tarasenko. He signed the richest contract in team history in 2015 (8 years, $60 million) before Robert Thomas and Jordan Kyrou passed that mark with matching deals last summer.

Tarasenko, a pending unrestricted free agent, had not been engaged with Blues in recent talks for a new contract extension. Trade talks intensified as early as 2021, after Tarasenko expressed frustration with how the Blues medical staff handled his recovery from two shoulder surgeries. The Blues, to some degree of surprise, also exposed him in the 2021 expansion draft for the Seattle Kraken, but he went unclaimed.

The trade happens less than a week after Tarasenko represented the Blues in the 2023 All-Star Game, his fourth career selection. He appeared to enjoy the experience, but a long break between the All-Star break and the Blues next game, this Saturday, likely helped trade talks gain traction over recent days.

Tarasenko provided this insight on his future to The Athletic last week on his future with the Blues:

“Even Vladdy don’t know the future of Vladdy. There is only one guy who knows more than me, and his name is Doug Armstrong. I think that’s the guy who you should talk about my future (with) the Blues.”

St. Louis slumped mightily going into the All-Star break and playoffs seem to be a long shot for the first time in awhile. The Blues appear almost certain to at least explore the seller’s market and see whether other impending UFAs, like Ryan O’Reilly and Ivan Barbashev, might net a plausible return. The NHL trade deadline is set for March 3.

This is a developing story. FOX 2 will update as more information becomes available.