The Seattle Kraken (0-1) dropped their first game of the new season 4-1 on Tuesday night. We don’t need to get into that, Vegas for some reason just has our number right now. Soon enough, we will figure those guys out. Lucky for us, this is an 82 game season and Game 2 is tonight in Nashville against the Predators.
The Kraken are 4-1-1 all-time against the Predators, 2-0-1 last season.
Nashville (0-1) played the first game of the opening night triple header, against the Tampa Bay Lighting. They lost 5-3 in what most fans would call a snoozer. Really nothing great about this game. For Nashville, their most expensive player Filip Forsberg showed up with 2 assists.
This is a game where both teams are looking to get their first win. I feel pretty good about this matchup for the Kraken. Let’s take a look at the 3 Keys to Victory for Seattle Kraken at Nashville Predators.
The Seattle Kraken need to take the Nashville fans out of this game early
The Kraken could take away Nashville’s biggest strength, the fans, immediately with a few early goals. Seattle led the NHL in 5-on-5 goals last season and should be able to come out and move the puck well against a very inferior Predator roster. Our boys are deep up front, and could roll any of their 4 lines against any of the Predators’ and still score.
This is a game where the Kraken’s top line (Jared McCann, Matty Beniers, and Jordan Eberle) could score 2 or 3 goals. The earlier the better too. If we can get up by a few goals early in this game, the rest should be smooth sailing as the Preds will be in panic mode.
Watch for Oliver Bjorkstrand to get a goal from the third line. I just feel this coming.
The Kraken need another solid effort in net
Not that goalie Philipp Grubauer had a bad game on Tuesday, the team coughed up a couple of crappy pizzas that put them away early. Aside from the 2 early bonehead goals, Gru actually was solid for the majority of the game. The team has not released who will be starting in net, but either way we need another solid effort from our goalie.
If Grubauer gets the nod, he will be looking to continue his solid play from Game 1. Should Joey Daccord be summoned (I honestly think he will) expect a spectacular performance from him. This matchup is a fairly friendly one and the team coaching staff could look at this as an opportunity for Daccord to start the season off with a win, and build momentum as an NHL goalie.
Daccord was outstanding last season for the Kraken’s AHL affiliate Coachella Valley Firebirds. He will be looking to take advantage of this opportunity to make a name for himself. In spite of the fact that the coaching staff is confident in both goalies, expect both goalies to be on a short leash at the start of the season as last year’s most glaring team weakness was goaltending.
Seattle needs to shut down Filip Forsberg
The best offensive player on Nashville is Filip Forsberg and the Kraken know it. We need to take away his ability to make plays and not give him any quality shots. Remember, it was just 2 years ago that this swashbuckler-looking Swede scored 42 goals. He can score.
A lot of fans have forgotten about him, and many experts have overlooked this guy, but I am not. He can flat out play. If last game against Tampa is any indication, homeboy has found his game and is back. We need to shut him down at all costs.
How do we do this? The defense needs to smother Forsberg and cut off his passing lanes. We also need to keep him outside the house and let him rot with the puck along the boards. I can see our coaches matching him up with Yanni Gourde or Beniers a lot in this one. Kailer Yamamoto could be a thorn in his side as well. If Brandon Tanev plays, expect him to piss off Forsberg.
Brandon Tanev is the only player on the injury report. He is day-to-day with an upper body injury (the head shot he took in Game 1).
The puck drops at 5:00 PDT on Root NW.
Fear the deep!