Seattle Kraken, Martin Jones

Kraken To Face Upgraded New York Rangers

The Seattle Kraken will be the first team to get a look at high scoring winger Vladimir Tarasenko with his new team, the New York Rangers.

Blueshirts General Manager Chris Drury announced the deal on Thursday with the St. Louis Blues and GM Doug Armstrong, who decided to move the 31-year-old sniper and pending unrestricted free agent.

Tarasenko helped win a Stanley Cup for the Blues in 2019 and has scored 262 goals in a career that amounts to about eight full seasons if one factors in time missed due to injuries. He was the Blues 1st-round draft pick back in 2010.

Sammy Blais, a Stanley Cup teammate of Tarasenko’s, who was traded to New York in 2021, returns to the Blues as part of the deal.

Lack of Kraken Finish

So close, but yet so far, and it wasn’t for a lack of effort.

The Kraken pounded New Jersey Devils goalie MacKenzie Blackwood with pucks on Thursday night. They snuck shots through him, hit crossbars, and swarmed around the net. They just couldn’t finish in the 3-1 loss.

“We had good looks tonight,” Kraken Head Coach Dave Hakstol said postgame. “I think both goaltenders were good, especially in the first. In the first half of this hockey game we had good opportunities, on the 5-on-3 power play we had some good opportunities, so I don’t want to get too frustrated over that, we’ve got to continue generating those opportunities and look to finish them.”

“I feel like we played a good game,” Kraken forward Alex Wennberg told the media. “Obviously just a lot of great things from it, I mean it comes down to special teams. We have opportunities to score there and we don’t and they score two of them (power play goals), so it’s a tough one today, but it’s a new game tomorrow and just focus on the next one.”

Whatayaknow, special teams and goaltending the key. The Devils went 2-for-4 on the man advantage, the Kraken 0-for-3, including that extensive 5-on-3 chance. Blackwood made 33 saves on the evening. Philipp Grubauer made 25 for the Kraken.

Expect Martin Jones to start against the Rangers.

Face-off is a little after 4 pm pacific time on Friday at Madison Square Garden.

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.