2008-09: Daniil Tarasov skated for Dynamo Moscow’s second team in Russia as a 17-year-old. In 39 games he scored 14 goals with 22 assists and had 40 penalty minutes. Dynamo finished third in the First League Center Division. Tarasov scored 3 goals with 2 assists and had 6 penalty minutes in five playoff games.
2009-10: Tarasov appeared in two games with the USHL’s Waterloo Blackhawks in his first season in North America and led the Cape Cod Cubs to the championship of the International Junior Hockey League. He was +2 with no points or penalty minutes in his brief stint with Waterloo. Tarasov scored 6 goals with 6 assists in 15 regular season games — receiving a dubious suspension that kept him out most of the season. Tarasov scored five goals in the league’s championship game and was named Playoff MVP.
2010-11: Tarasov was the second-leading scorer for Indiana in his first USHL season playing on a line with Blake Coleman (New Jersey) and Brian Ferlin (Boston). In 57 games he scored 37 goals with 38 assists and was +34 with 46 penalty minutes. The Ice finished third in the Eastern Conference and advanced to the playoff quarterfinals. Tarasov scored 2 goals with 4 assists and was -1 with 6 penalty minutes in five playoff games.
2011-12: Tarasov attended training camp with the Pittsburgh Penguins but was not signed and returned to the USHL for his second season. Tarasov led Indiana in scoring playing alongside Sharks prospect Sean Kuraly and his 88 points were second only to Lincoln’s Kevin Roy (Anaheim), who led the USHL with 104 points. Tarasov scored 47 goals with 41 assists in 60 games and was +31 with 86 penalty minutes. The Ice finished second in the Eastern Conference and reached the playoff semifinals. Tarasov scored 5 goals with 5 assists in six playoff games and was +10 with 8 penalty minutes.
2012-13: Tarasov made the jump directly from the USHL to pro hockey — signing an AHL contract with the Worcester Sharks. A healthy scratch early in the year, Tarasov appeared in one game in November before being loaned to the ECHL’s San Francisco Bulls. He returned to Worcester following the NHL lockout and was one of the team’s leading scorers. In 43 AHL games he scored 14 goals with 14 assists and was an even plus/minus with 20 penalty minutes. Worcester missed the AHL playoffs after finishing fourth in the Atlantic Division. In 17 ECHL games with San Francisco he scored 3 goals with 11 assists and was +5 with 2 penalty minutes. Tarasov signed a two-year entry-level contract with San Jose as a free agent in April, 2013.
Daniil Tarasov is an offensive dynamo. He possesses very good puck skills, highlighted by his effortless stickhandling ability. His ability to handle and control the puck at top speeds makes him a dangerous threat on the ice. He does not always show up to compete though. The player tends to shy away from physical play but is not afraid to mix things up along the boards on occasion. The playmaking Russian has some defensive deficiencies as one might expect from a player of this ilk. Due to this one dimensional side of his game he stands to be a top-six or bust type NHL player. He is good enough to one day play in the NHL, but he will need to remain consistent and improve upon his defensive reliability.
Tarasov will play the 2013-14 season with the Worcester Sharks where he will be counted on heavily to provide scoring for the offensively challenged AHL affiliate.