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Kraken review 2024

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PRESEASON OUTLOOK Seattle made the playoffs in their second year, made a solid showing and the hope was that they would follow Vegas as an expansion regular playoff team.


FINAL RECORD 34-35-13 81 points, 6th in Pacific, 17 points out of a playoff spot


STRANGE STAT OF THE YEAR Lots of individual splits, McCann led the team with 18 road goals but only had 11 at home. Bjorgstrand 13 at home only 7 away, Beniers 10 away only 5 goals at home. Dunn 27 points at home only 19 away. They are one of the three teams with huge home/road splits among their players.


HIGH POINT OF THE YEAR They started slow but December 20th they beat the Kings 2-1 starting a 9 game winning streak that led them back to 19-14-9, pretty much the halfway point of the year they were right smack dab in the playoff hunt with Joey Daccord playing lights out hockey in net.


LOW POINT OF THE YEAR They entered March in the playoff hunt, but the wheels fell off the wagon. They lost 7 straight to start March, essentially ending their season. It was over at that point. Hakstol was fired at seasons end.


WHAT WENT RIGHT McCann followed up his fantastic 2023 with a very solid 29 goal, 62 point season. Bjorgstrand was very good. Dunn missed 23 games, still scored very well. Six middle six wingers scored double digit goals. Larsson and Dumoulin were solid defensively. Daccord was extremely good, Grubauer was decent. Tolvanen was a surprise among the middle six forwards with scoring and energy.


WHAT WENT WRONG Start with Haksol, rumors are that the coach and team were barely on speaking terms by years end. Tanev has always been a favorite, but he is a shell of his former self. Eberle and Schwartz are aging quickly. Tatar was dreadful.  Gourde was bad. Schultz was a sieve on the back end. Wennberg was meh and was traded to the Rangers where suddenly he started playing well again.Burakovsky and Yamamoto were given a chance, neither did anything. Shane Wright spent another season in the minors and it is unknown if he ever will develop. Beniers may not be a flop but you can see flop from where he is, very raw, makes a ton of mistakes with and without the puck. The old got older and played slow, the young looked woefully young and raw. A bad mix.


FREE AGENTS Tatar, Bellemare, Schultz and Dreiger are  UFA who wont be back, most have likely played their last NHL game so it is addition by subtraction.  Beniers is a very tricky situation, he is a RFA, wanting a long term deal but has not been good. I am certain the Kraken would like to sign him for a two or three year deal but he wants more. A big decision for Francis to make. 


TOP PROSPECTS Shane Wright did good with Coachella for the AHL, was 5th on the team in scoring and managed 4 goals in 8 games with the Kraken. This is his coming year next year, they desperately need him to step up and score at a 50-60 point pace, which is more than he has ever scored in the minors. Cale Fleury was decent at Coachella and they hope he will be a bottom pair defender who can replace Schultz. 19 year old Ryan Winterton played solid as the 2C in the minors and didnt embarrass himself in 9 games with the big club. Huge defender Ville ottovainen was a plus 27 in the minors and is expected to duel for a spot in the defensive rotation. Ryker Evans played well for the first half in the AHL and arguably was the teams best defender other than Dunn down the stretch and is entrenched in the bigs.Ales Stazka came from the Czech republic and had one hell of a year going 19-6-2 with a 2.48 goals against but I think at 26 it was a fluky first year in North America and see him as fools gold.

  Lots to like, maybe not love but kid defenders pushing each other, Winterton could be a very solid 3C in the NHL next season with a bit of upside, but it comes down to Wright. They need him to step up and be the player they thought they were drafting. He does not need to be Bedard but he has to contribute.


OFFSEASON QUESTION MARKS They want a coach who can fire up the team which is a sign that Francis is looking to go with a lot of youth. A huge question is vets who are hanging around, are they done or are they capable of stepping back up? Can they trade Grubauer and his two years remaining at 5.9 million per or are they better using him along with Daccord? Wright and Beniers are the huge question marks, neither has done much so far in their career to inspire confidence, can either or both be the players they thought they were drafting?

  Going young next year, i would not be surprised to see them make a splash, adding a Guentzel or a top line scorer to take the pressure off the kids and aging vets. 

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Posted (edited)

@yave1964 @Brewin Flames


-My son and DIL are Kraken fans, so I end up watching a lot of their games.

-After riding the shooting percentage train in 2023, the Kraken came down to earth this year. After a disappointing season like that, I'm sure the players were frustrated with the coach, but

-Getting a new coach probably won't make a big difference. This is a team with decent speed, good gloves, but weak bats. They're the 3rd-smallest and 2nd-lightest team in the NHL, and a new coach doesn't magically create offensive talent where there was none before and he can't teach them to be bigger.

-The Kraken are the 2nd-oldest team in the NHL. They already have veterans. This team needs quality young players.

-They routinely get bullied around.

-Vince Dunn missing a quarter of the season hurt a lot.


Edited by JR Ewing
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