Seattle Kraken, Washington Capitals

Kraken Wrap: On Top of the West, The Numbers Don’t Lie

My favorite stat this time around is via the Seattle Kraken communications department via Natural Stat Trick, that states the following:

The Kraken have scored 24 five-on-five goals when Vince Dunn and Adam Larsson are on the ice together. Only New Jersey’s Dougie Hamilton and Jonas Siegenthaler have been on the ice for more of their team’s five-on-five goals (26).

It reminds us of how fortunate the Kraken have been in terms of blueline health and effectiveness. A perfect example of how quickly things can slip due to injury and ineffectiveness is just up the road in Vancouver where the Canucks went through eleven defensemen in the first month of the season. When Travis Dermott returns shortly from a preseason injury, that’ll make twelve.

Other than big Jamie Oleksiak missing four games, this has been the magic combination for the Kraken:

Adam Larsson Vince Dunn

Jamie Oleksiak Justin Schultz

Carson Soucy Will Borgen

Not enough can be said about consistency on the blueline.

Just Win Baby

As of Friday morning, the Seattle Kraken owned the best winning percentage in the NHL’s Western Conference at .717. They’re two points behind the Vegas Golden Knights in the Pacific Division standings, but the Kraken have two games in hand. Vegas has played 25 to Seattle’s 23.

Next closest in the West would be the Central Division leading Dallas Stars at 14-6-and-4 for a .667 win percentage.

Vegas visits the Detroit Red Wings Saturday night a few hours before Seattle hosts the Florida Panthers at Climate Pledge Arena. The Stars are off.

Rookie Leader

It’s always nice to get contributions from around the line-up, especially when you have the NHL’s leading rookie scorer. Matty Beniers potted the game winning goal on Thursday night against the Washington Capitals just seven seconds into overtime. That’s a franchise record that could hold up for fifty years.

More importantly, the just-turned-20-year-old has 21 points in 23 games this season. He leads the league’s first year players with that point total and also with his 10 goals. He presently has a six-game point scoring streak, one short of the franchise record set by Jordan Eberle in November, 2021.

The Most Important Position

The Kraken have the luxury of two outstanding veteran netminders at a reasonable combined price in Philipp Grubauer and Martin Jones. We’ll rate the pair compared to the rest of the NHL shortly.

Power play vs penalty kill at morning skate, December 1st.

Rob Simpson

Rob Simpson has covered the NHL in five different decades. He’s authored 4 books on hockey and is a veteran TV and radio play-by-play man and reporter.