Seattle, WA – The Kraken losing streak would extend to three games following their December 11th contest against the Columbus Blue Jackets. Seattle would go into the third period down 4-1, roaring back to send the game into an overtime period. Columbus would not allow Seattle to complete their quest for a comeback, as Jake Bean would net the winner just 55 seconds into that overtime period.
There are two sides to look at in this game, and it really comes down to the good and the bad. To start with the bad, the second period as a whole was an absolute nightmare for Seattle. The first goal from Columbus was a nice shot that Grubauer could have gotten a glove on, but the three that followed were all defensive lapses. A turnover that the Blue Jackets take advantage of and catch the Kraken sleeping, getting in one on one and two on one situations. Continued errors that the Kraken are making remain evident, and they come in a group of three all in that second period. The overtime goal was no different, as Marcus Johansson would screen his own goaltender, leaving Jake Bean with an even easier shot after you factor in that he was wide open.
The positives to take away from this game would be Seattle’s start, and their resiliency. The first period saw the Kraken apply heavy pressure to Blue Jackets goaltender Elvis Merzlikins, but none of the shots would make it into the net. Even in the beginning of the second period, Seattle was the one starting off hot. They did not finish that quarter well, and head coach Dave Hakstol had some thoughts about the way the period played out.
“In the second period we gave up some goals that were just too easy. We have to make Columbus fight harder for those, and we didn’t do that… I liked the way that we started in the first period, and even starting off that second period,” Hakstol recalled. “We came out in the third period and played an outstanding period.”
The Kraken did not bow their heads and give this game away, starting the third period off with a power play goal, an improvement over their power play struggles as of recent. Morgan Geekie would beat Merzlikins in a one-on-one situation, and Vince Dunn would beat the Columbus goaltender as well with a missile from the right faceoff circle to tie the game up and bring the fans inside Climate pledge arena to a roaring applause. Staying in the game and battling back is something that Morgan Geekie spoke about, and what it says about the team.
“I think it speaks to how much our group is growing as a team… I think we did a good job of pushing back. I think it’s a step in the right direction,” the young center stated.
These sorts of steps are ones that will probably include growing pains, but they are crucial to this team reaching sustained success sooner rather than later. Outside of the mental lapses defensively, Seattle dominates this game and we don’t have to worry about overtime. Similar to those big wins against top teams, this should be a building block game for the Kraken going forward. Resiliency and early offensive attack are two things that this team should keep as the season progresses.
The Seattle Kraken look to rebound in their next game on Tuesday, December 14th against the San Jose Sharks on the road with a 7:30PM PST puck drop.