Seattle Kraken, Oliver Bjorkstrand

Kraken May Have To Wait Until Friday To Learn Match-Up

The Seattle Kraken wrap up their regular season on Thursday night at home against the Vegas Golden Knights. Should they win and for some reason the Los Angeles Kings lose to the lowly Anaheim Ducks, then Seattle would hop into third place in the Pacific Division and be taking on the 2nd place Edmonton Oilers or Vegas Golden Knights in the 1st-round.

As we’ve pointed out, given the recent play of the Oilers in particular, and the potential match-up with Vegas, 3rd place in the Pacific might be the spot to avoid.

That right there is why the LA Kings might not mind losing to the Anaheim quackers, the team with the second fewest points in the NHL.

The club that doesn’t finish third in the division and ends up where the Kraken are now, in the 1st wild card spot, will be taking on the Central Division winner. As of now that potential opponent is completely up in the air.

And wait. If that is indeed Seattle’s fate, as in staying in the wild card position and heading on the road to a Central Division venue, they’ll likely have to wait an additional 24-hours after their final game to find out where they’re headed. Most of the NHL is done on Thursday night. It just so happens that one of the two games on Friday night involves one of the teams at the top of the yet-to-be-decided Central, the Colorado Avalanche.

Kraken Travel Plans

Forget making those plans just yet, but believe it or not, there’s another catch that could speed things up just a little bit. The Dallas Stars hopped over Colorado by a point at the top of Central Division with a Wednesday night victory over the St. Louis Blues.

The same two teams play again Thursday night. Should Dallas win again and Colorado lose to the Winnipeg Jets that evening, the Avalanche game on Friday would be meaningless. The Stars would be three points up, unreachable, and would be the 1st round opponent of the 1st wild card team.

Confused? That’s OK. At the end of hockey business at Climate Pledge Arena on Thursday, after the Kraken have wrapped things up with the Golden Knights, we’ll have a much clearer picture and we’ll also know whether or not we have to wait an extra night to start booking flights.

It’s all coming down to the last days of the season and that’s a beautiful thing. It’s the playoffs before the playoffs.

Bottom line, either way, the Kraken are in.

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.