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The Seattle Kraken One Month In, How Do They Look So Far?

Well, The Kraken have not had a very pleasant start to the season at all; they're at a measly 4-10-1, and are last in the Pacific Division, and Bottom 5 in the NHL as a whole. They're 1-6-1 on the road this season, with their only win coming back from the first week for the season. We'll be going over what's going wrong and whether or not it's time to panic (Spoiler, it isn't).

So? What gives? Why are the Kraken stinking it up so much this early? After watching their games and looking at the statistics, there are pretty much 3 main things that are stopping this team from success:

1) The Poor Power Play.

2) Inconsistent Goaltending and Fast Breaks.

3) Bad luck.

Seattle's head coach Dave Hakstol was a questionable hire when it was first announced, as he was originally with the Flyers out east in Philly, and got fired because of his consistent lacking of mid-season and mid-game adjustments, as well as having notoriously poor power plays, and unfortunately we're seeing early signs of this now.

The Kraken are currently ranked at number 32, or dead last in the NHL at power play with a pitiful 9.3% goal rate. Seattle absolutely HAS to get this number up to at least 20%. Seattle's power play is heavily limiting their offense, and is keeping them from winning close games that they're always in. This was one of the biggest concerns regarding the hire of Hakstol, as when he was in Philly his teams were consistently underwhelming when it came to the 2 minute advantages.

Secondly, Grubauer and the Kraken defense has been way too frisky. Grub has had some sensational performances this season like against Montreal on the 26th, and Minnesota on the 28th as Grub only gave up one goal in each of those performances and put up a devastating .958 SV% against the Habs and a .968 SV% against the Wild. Even with a few of those contests this year Grub has been mostly average to subpar with a save percentage of only .880 this season. When Grubauer swapped teams from the Capitals to the Avalanche he also started off pretty slow, and then heated up to be one of the most prolific netminders in the NHL, so I'm still optimistic about Seattle's goaltending improving.

As for the fast breaks, these have absolutely killed Seattle. For example, last night against the Wild all of Minnesota's even strength goals came off of fast breaks and turnovers and fast breaks. Taking care of the puck is incredibly crucial for the Kraken moving forward as it has cost them too many easy goals, and gives average teams consistent opportunities to capitalize.

Finally, bad luck has honestly been one of the biggest reasons as for why they've lost so many games this year. Against Vegas in the inaugural game of the season for Seattle, they lost that game on an incredibly controversial "kick-in goal" call, and against the Rangers on Halloween they out-shot New York 32-18, but somehow only managed to snag one goal in a 3-1 loss, among other examples.

It's only really a matter of time before Seattle is able to course correct their sinking ship, as they have too much talent to be a bottom feeder. Most likely they won't be competing for a Stanley Cup this season, or even a division title, as Vegas' first season seems to be an aberration. We're only a month into the marathon of the NHL season, but Seattle's rocky start needs to resolve soon if they do want to keep their hopes alive.

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