Skip to content

Hitchcock upset with Tarasenko hit: ‘It was a blow to the head’

Feb 22, 2013, 8:40 PM EDT

Toronto Maple Leafs v St. Louis Blues Getty Images

St. Louis head coach Ken Hitchcock is displeased with the hit that sidelined his star rookie, Vladimir Tarasenko.

“It’s a blow to the head,” Hitchcock told NHL.com’s Lou Korac about the shot Tarasenko took from Colorado’s Mark Olver on Wednesday night. “Don’t care how it got there, whether it was a legit hockey play — it happens fast.

“It was a blow to the head. That was my concern.”

On Thursday, the NHL said there would be no fine or suspension for Olver.

On Friday, the Blues put Tarasenko on injured reserve, with Hitchcock telling Korac the young Russian forward has a ‘pretty severe’ facial laceration and ‘some form’ of concussion.

Tarasenko was taken to hospital on Wednesday and released in time to fly home with his Blues teammates.

He didn’t have a headache on Thursday but reportedly had one on Friday, partly why St. Louis put him on IR.

For Hitchcock, the problem with the Olver-Tarasenko hit goes beyond legality. The veteran head coach said the incident is part of a larger-scale discussion regarding young players, awareness, vulnerability and unsuspecting positions.

More, from Korac:

“Everybody says ‘well it’s a hockey play,’ or whatever. I think there’s a bigger picture for me here,” Hitchcock said. “It’s not so much Vladi, it’s all the young players.

“These are young players who are in unsuspecting situations. It just seems like there’s a lot of young players that are getting hurt because experienced players know where they can catch them in vulnerable situations That’s the part that bothers me.

“The hit is the hit. The part that really bothers me is all the young players who don’t expect to get hit and have to learn these type of lessons. [Colorado's Gabriel] Landeskog or a Tarasenko, I’m sure there’s other ones, there’s lots of other ones and you just don’t like to see it.

“I wish there was a way that we could let the young guys play a little bit and not try to put them in unsuspecting [positions]. I don’t think in a million years he thought he would get hit in that situation.”

Related

Blues put Tarasenko on injured reserve

Report: No disciplinary hearing for Avs’ Olver after Tarasenko hit

Latest Posts
  1. Datsyuk will play tonight in Montreal

    Oct 21, 2014, 12:31 PM EDT

    Pavel Datsyuk Getty Images

    Skating on a line with Henrik Zetterberg and Justin Abdelkader.

  2. Struggling Avs, Jets have winnable games tonight

    Oct 21, 2014, 11:49 AM EDT

    Patrick Roy AP

    The flip-side being…what if they lose?

  3. Stars stick with Seguin-Spezza-Benn line vs. Canucks

    Oct 21, 2014, 11:44 AM EDT

    Tyler Seguin, Jason Spezza, Ales Hemsky, Jamie Benn Tyler Seguin, Jason Spezza, Ales Hemsky, Jamie Benn

    “It’s something I really want to see,” said head coach Lindy Ruff.

  4. Tavares: I’ve ‘never seen anyone’ change gears like McDavid

    Oct 21, 2014, 11:00 AM EDT

    Connor McDavid Getty Images

    The top 2015 draft prospect has impressed the Islanders’ superstar.

  5. Penguins send ’12 first-rounder Pouliot to minors

    Oct 21, 2014, 9:45 AM EDT

    Derrick Pouliot Getty Images

    He had been recovering from shoulder surgery.

  6. Ducks’ Heatley, Allen take step towards return

    Oct 21, 2014, 9:11 AM EDT

    Dany Heatley Getty Images

    Both players have missed the start of the season.

  7. NHL on NBCSN: Flyers take on ‘Hawks in Chicago

    Oct 21, 2014, 8:33 AM EDT

    Corey Crawford AP

    And they’ll face Antti Raanta in goal.

  8. Video: Oilers win…? Oilers win!

    Oct 21, 2014, 12:20 AM EDT

    HKN Lightning Oilers 20141020 AP

    It finally happened and it happened with a late goal.

  9. Video: Callahan (lower-body injury) leaves game against Oilers (Updated)

    Oct 20, 2014, 11:57 PM EDT

    Ryan Callahan Getty Images

    Caught Taylor Hall with a heavy hit earlier in the game.

  10. Don Cherry: ‘Something’s gotta go’ in Edmonton

    Oct 20, 2014, 11:07 PM EDT

    Don Cherry Getty Images

    Talking about the Oilers perhaps trading one of their young players.

  11. Video: Callahan crunches Hall

    Oct 20, 2014, 10:39 PM EDT

    Ryan Callahan Getty Images

    Heavy hit along the boards.

Featured video

Why are we talking about fighting... again?

Sign up for Fantasy hockey

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. P. Datsyuk (3555)
  2. J. Drouin (2854)
  3. J. Spezza (2716)
  4. M. Gaborik (2671)
  5. E. Kane (2612)
  1. E. Staal (2564)
  2. S. Varlamov (2553)
  3. J. Skinner (2242)
  4. P. Dupuis (2083)
  5. V. Hedman (2071)