St. Louis Blues President of Hockey Operations and General Manager Doug Armstrong announced today the team has acquired a conditional 2023 first-round draft pick (was Dallas Stars first-round pick), a 2024 fourth-round draft pick (turns to a third-round pick if Rangers make the playoffs), forward Sammy Blais and defenseman Hunter Skinner from the New York Rangers in exchange for forward Vladimir Tarasenko and defenseman Niko Mikkola.
Blais, 26, was originally drafted by the Blues in the sixth round of the 2017 NHL Draft and spent his first four NHL seasons in St. Louis. During his first stint with the Blues, the 6-foot-2, 206-pound forward posted 35 points (17 goals, 18 assists) and 44 penalty minutes in 119 regular-season games. After being acquired by the Rangers on July 23, 2021, Blais has collected nine assists and 25 penalty minutes across 54 regular-season games with New York. Overall, the Montmagny, Quebec, native has totaled 44 points (17 goals, 27 assists) and 69 penalty minutes in 173 career regular-season games.
Skinner, 21, was drafted by the Rangers in the fourth round (No. 112 overall) of the 2019 NHL Draft. This season, the 6-foot-2, 205-pound defenseman has tallied eight points (three goals, five assists) in 22 games with the ECHL’s Jacksonville Icemen as well as two assists in eight games with the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack. Overall, the Wyandotte, Michigan, native has recorded 17 points (five goals, 12 assists) and 42 penalty minutes in 67 career AHL games.
Tarasenko, 31, was drafted by the Blues in the first round (No. 16 overall) of the 2010 NHL Draft. Across 11 seasons with the Blues, the Yaroslavl, Russia, native accumulated 553 points (262 goals, 291 assists) and 185 penalty minutes in 644 regular-season games. He also posted 60 points (41 goals, 19 assists) and six penalty minutes in 90 postseason appearances.
Mikkola, 26, was drafted by the Blues in the fifth round (No. 127 overall) of the 2015 NHL Draft. Across four seasons with the Blues, the Kiiminki, Finland, native recorded 20 points (four goals, 16 assists) and 101 penalty minutes. Mikkola also posted two assists and 10 penalty minutes in 16 postseason games.