Tough breaks and a couple of mistakes and the Seattle Kraken start the season 0-and-1.
“The positive side is we generated some of those opportunities, the flip side of it, they generated on us as well,” Kraken head coach Dave Hakstol said after the 4-1 loss to the Vegas Golden Knights.
He made direct reference to what we pointed out in our game summary Tuesday night:
— The Kraken’s best three opportunities in the 1st period were golden ones, but Vince Dunn shot wide twice and Andre Burakovsky once.
“Early in the hockey game we executed better, we had a couple of missed nets on a couple of real good opportunities,” Hakstol said, “We executed the play really well, we didn’t finish. So all of a sudden, in a period where we’ve done a lot of pretty good things, we’re coming out of it down two-nothing and now you’re digging out of a deep hole.”
Dunn’s lack of touch may be a result of him sitting out preseason games and a couple of practices with an unknown ailment. Either way, the Kraken need to saddle up and be prepared for game two of the season in Nashville on Thursday night.
Hakstol generally takes a pretty top secret approach to injury reporting unless they’re blatantly obvious. In this case, what happened is obvious, but the extent of the possible injuries is not.
Kraken center Pierre Edouard Bellemare blocked a shot with his hand in the 2nd period and returned for a few shifts in the third, while winger Brandon Tanev took a shoulder hit to the head in the third period from Golden Knight Brett Howden and stayed down on the ice for a couple of minutes. Tanev didn’t return.
Howden was given a match penalty, tossed out, and the Kraken were given a five-minute power play. They failed to score on it, going 0-for-4 on the man advantage for the evening.
“We had a lot of good chances, I think we could be a little bit better on the break-outs, get in their zone and have control a little bit better.” Kraken winger Jared McCann said. “We did have some chances, goalie made some big saves for them, and we’re trying a new look here, just trying to keep building on it.”
The Golden Knights power play also went 0-for-4.
At even strength, Seattle was dominant for stretches.
“5-on-5 we skated, I think they had a hard time with out speed,” veteran Kraken winger Jordan Eberle said postgame. “If we can play like that and limit our mistakes and try to find something on the power play, we’re going to be a dangerous team.”
The Nashville match will begin a little after 5 pm pacific time on Thursday. Seattle will then visit the St. Louis Blues on Saturday night with the same start time.
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