Seattle Kraken, Dave Tomlinson

Kraken: Seattle Radio Man Leaving, Reader Feedback

I was never sure which variation of a hockey nickname to use on him; “Tommy”, “Tommer”, or just plan David, but a delightful professional to be around, Dave Tomlinson, is moving on from his radio color commentating duties with the Seattle Kraken.

There is strong speculation that he is following defenseman Carson Soucy up the road to the Vancouver Canucks to take over the television version of the same job on Sportsnet. Beloved long-time analyst John “Cheech” Garrett stepped away from the regional telecasts at the end of last season.

Other than adding “hair and make-up” to the mix, there would be no adjustment whatsoever. Tomlinson grew up in North Vancouver and was previously the radio commentator for the Canucks for seven seasons. The former centerman played college hockey at Boston University for four years, played 42 NHL games, and finished his career with a decade in Europe.

Regardless of his destination, Tomlinson is headed back north of the border.

Kraken Feedback

Reader and audience feedback to broadcasting and writing efforts over the years have covered the full gamut of emotions and responses. Lots of love, occasional irrational hate, and sometimes thought provoking analysis.

A recent dandy showed up in the feedback section of this website so I thought I’d share it forward. The author’s name is Bane.

“The Kraken are between a rock and a hard place. $8.5m for eight years is fair for a defenseman who produced like Vince Dunn did last year, and that amount is perfectly do-able with the Kraken’s cap situation. Unfortunately, paying that to Dunn comes with enormous risks. He has only performed at that level once, and, as Rob pointed out, players usually regress after their contract year. Sure, he was absolutely a top-pairing defenseman last year, but there is a significant chance that he will not be that productive again. Also, he did not have a great post-season, but, given the two explosive teams that he was playing against, I am inclined to say that he is better than his post-season performance.

You also have the problem of him being twenty-six years old, which means that he will be thirty-four when the contract is up. Defensemen are usually declining at that point, which would make him a likely buy-out candidate at that point in his career. That sucks for both him and the team. There are few conceivable scenarios where such a contract does not become an albatross at some point in the future.

On the other hand, not paying Vince Dunn is every bit as much of a gamble. Teams cling to top-pairing defensemen like life preservers when the ship is sinking, and there aren’t enough to go around. Getting another such player would surely come at a prohibitive cost, and if Francis would be willing to pay that price he may just as well pay Dunn – a player who has already developed good chemistry with his teammates.

It’s Dunn or nobody on the first pairing, so, unless Ryker Evans absolutely balls out beyond any reasonable expectations, the team would almost certainly be stuck without a suitable partner for Adam Larsson just as it is entering what looks like a wide-open window of Cup contention. In that sense, Vince Dunn is an absolutely critical component of the roster that Ron Francis has built. Francis has to pay him.”

Solid effort. The article that spurred the response: Kraken: 11 Days to Dunn Arbitration

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Thank you. And thank you Bane.

— More on prospect Ryan Winterton coming shortly


— Kraken Friday: Return Of The Firebirds; NHLer Faces Arrest

— Kraken Thursday: More Prospects on Display; NHL Deals

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.