Avalanche Rantanen, Kraken Tolvanen

Kraken Game Day 16: Both Teams Look To Bounce Back

If recent results are any indication, the Kraken perform better against the Colorado Avalanche on the road than at home, They’ll try to buck that trend when they host the 2022 Stanley Cup champions on Monday night.

Kraken Game Facts

This Evening: Colorado Avalanche at Seattle Kraken

Where: Climate Pledge Arena

When: 7 pm pacific

TV/Radio: ROOT Sports NW / FM 93.3

Key Factors:

The aforementioned trend has continued this regular season, with the Avalanche ruining the Kraken’s home opener 4-1 on October 17th, followed by Seattle winning in Denver four nights ago by a 4-3 final score. Oliver Bjorkstrand scored his second goal of the game on Thursday night to win it in the final minute.

Early predictions on the starting netminders might be tough on the Seattle side of things. Kraken head coach Dave Hakstol might want to go with his gut when choosing between Philipp Grubauer and Joey Daccord.

“Grooby” has had success against his former team, but again, mostly on the road.

“Hak” has some other decisions to make. Based on the practice line-up from Sunday morning, it would appear changes are in order. Vince Dunn and Yanni Gourde took maintenance days, so if you plug them back in, the Kraken should look something like this:

Jaden Schwartz – Matty Beniers – Kailer Yamamoto

Jared McCann – Alex Wennberg – Brandon Tanev

Eeli Tolvanen – Yanni Gourde – Oliver Bjorkstrand

Tye Kartye – Pierre-Edouard Bellemare – Ryan Winterton

Vince Dunn – Adam Larsson

Jamie Oleksiak – Will Borgen

Brian Dumoulin – Justin Schultz

Philipp Grubauer

Joey Daccord

Devin Shore was sent down to the AHL’s Coachella Valley Firebirds to make room for Brandon Tanev who appears ready to return his energy to the wing.

The wild cared is Shane Wright. Will the Kraken elect to go with him in the middle of the 4th line and keep Bellemare out? If he’s healthy, I’d think they’d go with the veteran. If Tanev doesn’t play, we’ll see both.

Veteran winger Jordan Eberle skated with the club for the first time following last Wednesday’s skate-cut injury to his leg, but he wore a red no-contact sweater which means he won’t be available to play.

Winger Andre Burakovsky remains week-to-week.

Alexandar Georgiev should get the start in net for Colorado. The Avalanche have lost two games in a row.

Winger Andrew Cogliano is day-to-day while recently injured top-six forward Artturi Lehkonen is “out”.

Who’s Hot? And Not …

Jaden Schwartz pushed his point streak to a new career high nine games with his goal against the Oilers.

Oliver Bjorkstrand, who seems to come up with big goals in bunches and has done so on multiple occasions against the Avalanche, might be counted on to keep that trend alive.

Eeli Tolvanen, with a four game point streak, had an assist on Bjorkstrand’s game winner in Denver.

Mikko Rantanen is clearly the hottest Avalanche player and he’s always been comfortable playing Seattle. Besides the goal and assist he has over the two games against the Kraken this season, he’s Colorado’s leading scorer overall with 19 points in 13 games and has a three-game point streak.

Special Teams

Seattle improved a smidge on the power play to a 26.7% success rate for the season with a 1-for-3 night against the Oilers. Edmonton also went 1-for-3 as the substandard Kraken penalty kill slipped to 72.1%, 5th worst in the NHL.

Meanwhile, the Avalanche penalty kill is a very sound 85.2% on the season, while their power play is a surprisingly poor 16.3%.

Coming In:

Avalanche: 8-and-5 after getting walloped at home on Saturday night by the St. Louis Blues 8-2.

Kraken: 5-7-and-3, coming off the 4-1 loss at home to the Edmonton Oilers two nights ago.

Recent Kraken:

— Simmer’s Sunday 9: HHOF Memories, NHL Coach Fired

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.
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6 months ago

It’s a pity that they can’t keep Shore with the big club. He is a good energy guy, and it would have been a riot to see him play on a line alongside Tanev. Too many good forwards is quite a problem to have. But, hey, Coachella Valley needs good forwards as well.