Top 5 Takeaways from the Kraken’s first Win and Loss. 

The Seattle Kraken lost their first ever franchise game on a controversial goal. This was a real tough way to lose the first, but they find a way to  bounce back to win their second game. The first win is always the hardest. That’s no secret. With the Seattle Kraken starting their season on a five game road trip, no one knew when the first win would come. Especially with how difficult it can be to go into another team’s barn to come out with a win. 

Thankfully the city of Seattle and fans around the world only had to wait 2 games. Both games were extremely fun to watch and the Kraken are already Crackin’. When starting a new season there are always things to work on. This comes especially true for a brand new team that are playing their first ever games. Let’s evaluate the positives and negatives of the team so far. As well as what is encouraging and what needs to be improved.

Finding an Identity:

The Kraken’s style of play was imminent in their first game against the Golden Knights. With a great start, it quickly disappeared after letting in the first ever goal against. Starting out with a fast, high pressure, and physical style the Kraken needed to find consistency in this. Midway through the 2nd they were able to find their legs again and push for a comeback. In the end, it wasn’t enough.

Their second game started the same way as the first. The Kraken certainly doesn’t want to be a team that gets used to giving up early leads. Fortunately enough, the Power Play saved them. In game 2, the powerplay went 2/2 against the Nashville Predators. Brandon Tanev came in clutch allowing the Kraken to go up 2-1 in the game and then eventually the game-winning-goal (GWG) in the team’s first ever win! 

Here’s what they need to do moving forward. They need to tighten up and solidify their structure. In their first two games they have allowed 7 goals. In all seven goals you can see what the Kraken did wrong. They weren’t lucky or set goals, they were simply goals where the other teams took advantage of Seattle’s mistakes. They will look to solidify each player’s role/positioning on each line, in order to play a more structured game to not give other teams quality chances to score.

Thanks Pittsburgh!

Our top two goal scorers and leading scoring both come off of great years with the Pittsburgh Penguins. Pittsburgh traded Jared McCann to Toronto in the off-season, allowing Seattle to take both former penguins. Canner and Turbo are both quickly becoming fan favorites in Seattle.

Both provide incredible talent a team needs in order to succeed. Both bring resiliency, special teams, and speed. Turbo Tanev thrives off of his physical play and McCann has a unique skill set with an incredible shot! Both have notched 2 goals. McCann has 3 points in two games. Continue to look to these guys to show up and lead the team to play Kraken hockey.

NASHVILLE, TN – OCTOBER 14: Jared McCann #16 and Brandon Tanev #13 of the Seattle Kraken celebrate their game-winning-goal against the Nashville Predators during an NHL game at Bridgestone Arena on October 14, 2021 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images)

Overcoming Obstacles:

Hours before the game, the Kraken were preparing to be without 5 top players due to the Covid Protocol. Thankfully, 4 out of 5 of those tests were false positives, as Jared McCann, Marcus Johansson, Jonas Donskoi, and Jaimie Oleksiak and Jonas Donskoi were able to arrive at the rink just an hour before the game while the rest of the team was already there. Though they didn’t win the game, these four were HUGE in the comeback against the Golden Knights. An eventful 48 hours for these fellas. Even with all of the distraction and the craziness of playing your first 2 games, the Kraken were still able to start the season 1-1. Calle Jarnkrok is still in protocol and has been unable to return since testing positive

The obstacles didn’t end there. After top six forward Marcus Johansson was questionable to play in game 1, he showed up on the injury report after the game with a lower body injury.  Meaning the Kraken won’t play a game with a full roster for quite some time. Yanni Gourde is still day-to-day and has yet to play a game. 

Today, in game 3, they will, once again, be down Gourde, Johansson, Colin Blackwell, Jarnkrok, and now defensemen Vince Dunn due to an ailment. These first few games have already tested the young team’s depth. So far, they have been able to rise to the challenge. Let’s just hope it continues.

Morgan Geekie needs to keep firing the puck.

Morgan Geekie’s skill set was on full display in game 1 of the season. Geekie tied the game with an unreal shot going top shelf on goalie Robin Lehner. His first as a Kraken will certainly be one to remember.

This Kraken team has a lot of guys who can fire the puck. Each line seems to have at least one guy with a great shot. Obviously, everyone on the top line can do so (Shwartz, Eberle, and McCann), but so can depth guys like Wennberg, Donskoi, Donato, and even fourth liner Riley Sheahan. If this team wants to continue having high scoring games, they must not shy away from shooting the puck. They certainly have the personnel to do so.

Waiver Wire:

That same day, GM Ron Francis had to make a transaction to dilute the effects of the  COVID complications. Thankfully, they were able to add Alex Barre-Boulet who made an impact in his first game. In game 2 against Nashville, the young forward made a beautiful move to get the puck to Wennberg allowing the Kraken to regain the lead to help to bring Seattle their first win as a franchise. 

Not even a week in and the Kraken have made some noise on the infamous waiver wire. Defenseman Dennis Cholowski was claimed off waivers by the Washington Capitals. They had to add him to the active roster when Jaime Oleksiak had a COVID scare ahead of game 1. Not even playing a game, they had to put him on waivers. Personally, I thought Cholowski had an impressive camp. Still, this isn’t something to worry about considering the Kraken depth down the blueline. 

Tonight the team will face the Columbus Blue Jackets on their turf at 7pm ET. Again they will be without key players, but that is what this team is all about. If they can stick to their game they can certainly start the season off with 4 points (2-1-0) in 3 games.

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