The Seattle Kraken from Dave hakstol started with the expected problems of a team from expansion. The first campaign of the Vegas Golden Knights It was an anomaly, when we reached the end of the Stanley Cup from the hand of Gerard Gallant. Seattle seems to be finding its identity in the rink and it has resulted in a two-win streak. They also went to the Florida Panthers and they won 4-1. The Kraken in passing snapped the Cats’ 11-win streak at home to start the season.
Currently one looks at the standings and will say that the Kraken he’s at the bottom of the Pacific with 17 points and just ahead of the Canucks. Seattle beat the Capitals and also before the hot Carolina Hurricanes. Those triumphs against top teams in the Eastern Conference, they were no coincidence. The victory that can really change the season for Seattle, was achieved in Florida against the Panthers. They played that game aware of what they want to be. The 7-4 win over the Sabers was really expected.
To win faceoffs and having defensive discipline is key for the Kraken to find its identity
Seattle won 4-1 in Florida and showed the ability to outperform the rival in winning the faceoffs, yes the faceoffs, an always key aspect of the fundamentals of hockey. The Kraken won 18 out of 25 faceoffs in defensive zone and that limited the known explosive offensive of the Panthers. Morgan geekie and Alex Wennberg were decisive in the faceoffs And it’s something Seattle can build on to beat more talented teams who have been playing together longer.
The Kraken is 17th in the league in percentage from faceoffs (faceoff win percentage). The Kraken of Hakstol always prioritized before the campaign, that they would try to be a defensive team and that they would try to take advantage of their offensive opportunities. Gaining possession of the puck in your own zone will always be key to limiting powerful offenses like the ones the Kraken have faced in recent days and weeks.
The appearance of the goal is another important. Chris driedger He played his former Cats team and allowed only one goal. Driedge had only played three starting games before the game against Florida. Driedger allowed only one goal on 34 shots from Huberdeau, Barkov and company. Driedger can be a very good backup to give respite to Philipp Grubauer. Grubauer was coming off a solid campaign with Avalanche but in Seattle he started slow with a regular average of 3.03 goals against.
Schwartz, Gourde and Eberle’s front row needs more support for the remainder of the season
The first line of the Kraken It is solid but requires the others to help it in terms of production.n Former Blue, Jaden Schwartz, He leads the team in points with 17 (12 assists). The veteran ex Oiler, Jordan Eberle, He is the team leader in goals with 11 (16 points). The two-time champion with Tampa, Yanni Gourde, had a very good October after a slow start. The center already has 14 points (5 goals and 9 assists). That front row could be the front row or second row for any of the 30 NHL teams.
The identity of this Kraken is wanting to be the most grinder possible and take advantage breakaways and odd man rushes. Seattle does not want to be a spectacular team but it does want to be functional. The philosophy that both Hakstol and GM Francis want to implement is that of order and from there to build the rest.
The problem for the Kraken lies in the little support in the rest of the lines. The third row forward, Jared McCann, he has 14 points in the campaign. McCann he is one of those who have supported Schwartz, Gourde and Eberle. McCann has contributed a lot with five goals in the power play. Former fourth-row forward and sprinter Shark, Joonas Donskoi is someone who has warmed up in recent weeks. Alex Wennberg in the second row already has 10 assists this season.
Captain Mark Giordano he’s injured and has been below expectations when healthy. Defenders must contribute more in attack. Vince Dunn and Jamie Oleksiak they are the two that have helped the most in the points quota. The Kraken is a team that is also in a Pacific division where the Anaheim Ducks and the Los Angeles Kings have played better than expected.
Seattle has a calendar hard in this month of December, since it receives at home the Penguins and the Oilers of Draisatl and McDavid. The most complicated visits are to go to Anaheim and San José, which are direct division rivals. They also receive the Flames and they go to Calgary at the end of the month.