Seattle Kraken, Jordan Eberle

Kraken NHL Daily: Seattle Rights Ship; Letang Returns

Kraken Roadie

The Seattle Kraken evened up their road trip with an impressive 5-2 win over the Florida Panthers on Sunday. Particularly impressive was the goaltending of Martin Jones early and the penalty killing throughout, keeping in mind Jones is the best penalty killer.

“We’d lost three in a row, and you’re gonna need that sixty minute performance to push back in the right direction and our players for the most part did that,” Kraken head coach Dave Hakstol said. “There’s always gonna be a couple little momentum swings, but there wasn’t a lot of that tonight. We feel like we were pretty consistent throughout the hockey game, specialty teams were solid and contributed to the win, goaltending was good, and that’s what it takes to get a good road win.”

The Kraken now stand at 11-2-and-1 when scoring the first goal of a hockey game. The NHL’s leading rookie scorer Matty Beniers opened the scoring for Seattle 64-seconds into the game. The key was keeping a strong effort going for the next 59-minutes.
“There was just recognition that that’s something we’ve been struggling with, that we knew before the game, playing a full sixty minutes,” Beniers said postgame. “That’s something we harped on and we were able to put it into action tonight.”

The Kraken improved to 9-2-and-1 on the road this season and answered any questions about whether or not they were entering a slump. They should be jacked up for the challenge that is the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday (4 pm pacific).

Let’s Skate!

Speaking of skating, happy to see Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Kris Letang doing just that after missing just five games following the second mild stroke of his career. He led the Penguins in ice time Saturday evening (22:14) in the team’s 3-1 victory over the Buffalo Sabres.

Letang’s first stroke occurred back in January of 2014. He recovered and has gone on to play 500-plus regular season and 69 playoff games and win two Stanley Cups since then.

His second stroke happened November 28th after a full practice. Reoccurring migraine headaches led to a trip to the hospital and the diagnosis. He returned this weekend with a vengeance.

“”I’m lucky to have the staff we have,” Letang stated late last week. “I know I’m in good hands. I’ve been lucky that these things resolve on their own, can go back to a normal life. People know me well by now. They know that hockey is a passion for me. It’s something that is going to take a lot to drag me out of it.”

The 2005 3rd-round pick of PIttsburgh is closing in on 1,000 career NHL games and should hit the mark before the end of the season. He’s at 963.

Wright Times

The start times have been set for the 2023 World Junior Championship in Nova Scotia, with Seattle Kraken forward Shane Wright and Team Canada playing in Group A in Halifax and Team USA participating in the round robin of Group B in Moncton.

USA will open at 1 pm pacific against Latvia on December 26th with Canada opening that same day at 3:30 pm pacific against the Czech Republic.

The two countries play again on the 28th; Team USA against Slovakia at 1 pm again and Canada once again at 3:30, this time against Germany.

Enjoy the Hockey Action !!

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.