Seattle, WA – Similar to their first matchup in January that saw the Kraken march into Boston and shutout the Bruins, the rematch was exhilarating from start to finish. The Kraken and Bruins traded haymakers throughout the 60 minutes, as a total of four response goals were traded between the two teams. Ultimately, Boston was able to take advantage of a few too many mistakes made by Seattle, scoring the game winner on a tip in by Jake DeBrusk in the final minutes. The Kraken, just like in their first matchup with the Bruins, proved that they belong amongst the NHL’s elite, but they must clean up some minor issues to remain in that tier.
Coming off an embarrassing shutout loss to a depleted San Jose Sharks team, Seattle needed to see a drastic change in effort and execution when they faced off against the Bruins. They got just that, pushing the pace against Boston from the very start. Perhaps the primary issue from the loss was that Seattle had too many mistakes on a night that was on par with the Bruins otherwise. Of the six goals that Boston tallied in game, three of them came from Bruins’ skaters who were left unmarked, while another was off a turnover at the blue line while the Kraken were on the power play. Mistakes will happen in virtually every game, but the ones that Seattle made were far too critical and against a team that will make you pay for those errors every single time.
“If you’re gonna score five goals, usually you’re gonna win. I thought that we made a lot of dull mistakes, I had one on my part, I got beat to the net. Marchand had an empty net there, that’s on me, I have to box him out, I have to find him. Grubi was good, but again I thought that we have to pick our sticks up more,” Yanni Gourde said about the loss.
While it’s a loss that doesn’t give the Kraken any help in the standings, they fell to the first wild card in the Western Conference, this game means more than just a notch in a column. Seattle showed once again that they belong with the NHL’s elite and very well can topple a great team on any given night. Yes, the shutout loss to a bottom feeding team like San Jose is embarrassing, but the Kraken at their height have the ceiling of a cup contending team. Displays of selfless defense, versatile offense, and phenomenal goaltending show what this team can be when they click. In addition, all of tonight’s efforts were done without the help of forward Andre Burakovsky who is still week-to-week. This Kraken team, and its franchise, has the wheels of success set in motion and the journey from here is a very promising one. Who knows, these two teams very well could meet again if the stars align just right.
“I thought we played a good game honestly, they did too. I think that we can build some momentum off of this, even though it was a loss we did a lot of good things offensively and defensively. Hopefully we can take the good out of it and keep rolling,” Matty Beniers said about playing his hometown team.
The Kraken will get a day off and a practice day prior to their next contest, a showdown with the Toronto Maple Leafs. Like their contests against Boston, the Kraken marched into Toronto last time around and stunned the Leafs, now looking to do the same in Seattle. The Maple Leafs and Kraken will face off against each other for the second time this season on Sunday, February 26th with a puck drop of 4PM PST. Seattle will aim to get some positive momentum rolling before they head into a four game, eight-day road trip.