The Seattle Kraken beat the Arizona Coyotes 4-1 last night. The wins makes it 3 against Arizona in the past 8 days. I think it is safe to say that we have their number. In a game that felt routine for the Kraken, the team is hitting their stride at the best possible time.
Having already clinched their first playoff birth in franchise history (such a long history-2 years), team is able to focus on playing wining hockey, and gelling together at the right time. The team is on a five game winning streak. If the playoffs started today, the Kraken would be taking on the defending Stanley Cup Champion Colorado Avalanche, who themselves are playing their best hockey of the season.
So how important are the remaining two games? The Kraken currently have 100 points on the season and are the first Wild Card slot, and sit fourth in the Pacific Division. If the team wins out, they would finish with 104 points and could then leap frog the (third place in the Pacific) Los Angeles Kings.
If every other team stays the same, the Kraken could end up playing either Colorado or the Edmonton Oilers. With the seasons that Connor McDavid (64 goals, 87 assists, and 151 points) and Leon Draisaitl (51 goals, 73 assists, and 124 points) have had, I guess this is a choose your poison type situation.
Defending Cup Champs or unstoppable scoring machine (when our biggest weakness is goaltending)?
The goalies have stepped up as of late. It’s true they are playing well, but we can’t look past the fact that goaltending wins Cups (a top center and goaltending).
Honestly, I cannot think of one Stanley Cup champion team that did not have an elite center and a top goaltender. Think back the past 30 years and try and find an NHL team that has won it all and did not have those two pieces.
I’ll wait (please say the Blackhawks- then look at their numbers)
The Kraken currently have solid forwards who all can score, a deep blue line, and hot/cold goaltending.
So we will see. Was Grubauer’s success two years ago a result of playing for the Avalanche? Was he just not that elite? Have injuries riddled him? We will find out next week.
The wild Western Conference is still wide open. Colorado, Dallas, or Edmonton could finish in first place, Vegas could fold, Vegas could finish in first. The playoff seating is far from set so these remining games are crucial. The Kraken need to bring it the next two games and control what they can control. Stay hot going into the playoffs, do not rest and slow down.
Let’s finish hot!
Fear the deep!