Seattle Kraken, Dave Hakstol

Kraken Injuries Mount Ahead of Flames Game

While the Calgary Flames should be reeling a bit and somewhat ticked off following Thursday night’s 5-1 home loss to the NHL’s next-to-last Chicago Blackhawks, the home-standing Seattle Kraken are dealing with a mini injury rash for the first time this season heading into Friday night’s match-up.

With Matty Beniers getting knocked out of the line-up due to the “garbage” hit from Vancouver defenseman Tyler Myers on Wednesday night, he joins Jaden Schwartz and Justin Schultz in the press box. The Kraken put Schultz on injured reserve on Friday with his lower body injury.

Kraken head coach Dave Hakstol confirmed Friday morning that Beniers will not be available Friday or Saturday night, and could not speculate as to whether the rookie forward’s NHL All-Star Game appearance next weekend is in danger.

If he’s unavailable, we’ve speculated that Jared McCann or Andre Burakovsky would be his replacement, in that order of preference.

Beniers leads all NHL rookies in scoring with 36 points, 17 of them goals.

While not pretending to be doctors, there’s legitimate concern that the Beniers injury is concussion related. That’s makes a prognosis difficult to predict as no two players react alike to head injuries and no two recoveries are the same.

Schultz’s malady impacts his ability to skate, a situation that will require simple rest and healing. He’s missed three games and is considered week-to-week. Schwartz’s issue is more acute and he’s listed as day-to-day. He missed six games this season but not all consecutively.

From a Kraken season standpoint, All-Star participation or not, the break comes at a good time for Beniers and the others. The Kraken have a gigantic nine-day gap without games, some bonus time for all of their men to recover.

Flames Visit Kraken

Meanwhile, the Calgary Flames hit Climate Pledge Arena coming off a disappointing performance at home, one observer suggesting “they stunk from top to bottom”. They’ll have their hands full with a confident Kraken roster that has added AHL call-ups John Hayden and then Max McCormick. McCormick played ten games for Seattle last season.

Calgary is tied for the 2nd wild card spot in the Western Conference while the Kraken sit atop the Pacific Division.

Puck drop is a little after 7 pm pacific. Saturday night, Seattle hosts the Columbus Blue Jackets, the team with the NHL’s fewest points.

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.