Seattle, WA – In a rough, grinding, physical effort, the Minnesota Wild ended the Seattle Kraken win streak at five as the visitors were victorious, 1-0. In a near opposite from the last time these two teams faced off last week, Minnesota left nearly no chinks in their defensive armor. The Kraken were able to get some close opportunities from further out, but the high danger away in the middle of the Wild defensive zone was locked down tight. Despite their win streak finding its end, Seattle had several positives to take away from the matchup, including the continued excellent performance of Martin Jones in net.
With Marcus Foligno and Brandon Duhaime back in the lineup, Minnesota was able to contain a Kraken attack that had found the back of the net three times per game in their last ten contests. A physical, hard hitting Wild presence in their own defensive zone and excellent play between the pipes by Marc-Andre Fleury left Seattle searching for the net from long distance. Minnesota is a large, physical team and unfortunately, the Kraken are not built to beat a team like that most times. Seattle head coach Dave Hakstol spoke about the loss, postgame.
“It was a pretty tight game; we knew that it was going to be that way. Both teams know how to limit opportunities, they found one off a turnover in the first period. We didn’t get enough from the inside. In the third, we had three or four looks from the inside, but we couldn’t get one off a rebound, couldn’t find one in behind, it was just that kind of night,” Hakstol stated.
Seattle had plenty of opportunities to avoid the goose egg on the scoreboard, starting the first two periods with power plays, and getting a few late in the third period. With the man advantage, Seattle has only cashed in on one of their last ten opportunities, as they went scoreless on four tries tonight. Even when Minnesota had to take a man off the ice, the Kraken were able to get much of a real dangerous chance on goal, as their power play continues to flail. While it may seem to some like the unit needs a shake up, Kraken head coach Dave Hakstol disagrees.
“It’s that kinda night, some nights you have to score five on five. Power play wise, what stands out is that we lost each opening face off. The puck went 200 feet each time, that puts their PK into a good start for each one. You’re gonna have nights where that’s how it’s going to go for the power play, we wanna be better there for sure, but for me tonight it feel like we had to find a greasy one somewhere inside… we didn’t come up with it,” Hakstol remarked.
While this is a loss at the end of the day, there were a few positive takeaways to look at for the Kraken. The Seattle penalty kill is seeing great improvement, having eliminated the last 17 power plays that they have faced. While it is odd that the specialty units are flipping as compared to earlier in the season, there is hope that at a point in this season both can begin to click together. In between the pipes, Martin Jones continues to impress for the Kraken, and he may need to continue to do so as starter was transferred from injured reserve to long term injured reserve. All things considered, Seattle is primed to begin a new win streak.
The Kraken will have a day off before continuing their six-game homestand, as they welcome the Winnipeg Jets to town on Sunday, November 13th. Mark Scheifele, Kyle Connor and the Jets will battle the Kraken inside of Climate Pledge Arena with a puck drop of 5PM PST. Seattle is hoping that they can rebound from this loss and jump back up to second place in the Pacific Division.