Kraken find fun offense; strong penalty kill to top Oilers in first preseason game of 2022

Period 3

Seattle, WA – To open up their 2022 preseason, the Seattle Kraken won their first preseason contest at Climate Pledge Arena in franchise history. After a first period that defined “shaking the rust off,” Seattle used some fun and creative offense to get on the board and never look back. Kraken netminders Martin Jones and Joey Daccord kept the Oilers scoreless, displayed quality between the pipes. While it is just day one, the Kraken showed potential of a much better team compared to last year.

2021 second overall pick Matty Beniers made plenty of noise in his first ten games, tallying nine points. Beniers is now a Calder trophy favorite, and it seems like he will live up to that expectation. In period one, the University of Michigan man nearly scored off of a pass from new teammate Oliver Bjorkstrand, but barely missed slipping the puck in the net. In period two, Beniers righted his wrong and smashed a wicked shot past Edmonton keeper Olivier Rodrigue. Beniers disregarded the nearly impossible angle and beat Rodrigue top shelf. Kraken head coach Dave Hakstol reflected on Beniers’ performance, postgame.

““He’s been really confident with the puck, seeing the ice really well… real positive things that’s he’s doing, working, skating, competing. He’s driving the compete level.”

A big issue for Seattle last season was their lack of production on the power play. With some offensive additions, and some veteran defenseman to quarterback the power play, there is hope that the Kraken can improve in that department. While Seattle did fail to find the back of the net tonight, going 0-6 on the power play, there were encouraging signs visible. Being able to draw these penalties was a positive, and Oliver Bjorkstrand was allowed to roam freely as a bumper.

With the new additions of Oliver Bjorkstrand, Andre Burakovsky and some veteran defenseman, it seemed that Seattle got better on paper instantly this offseason. Tonight, some of that improvement was visualized in the penalty kill, some sparks on the power play, and fun lines featuring new additions and tenured players. The main factor of importance in this preseason for Seattle is building cohesion within its new roster, and if they can do that, the Kraken will be much better than their inaugural season. Seattle head coach Dave Hakstol discussed the chemistry postgame.

“We have some nice building blocks in play, some foundational pieces…. It’s really important that we pass what we’re doing here along. Start to get a little sense of the importance of what we’re doing here”

The Kraken will play the second game of a back-to-back when they take on the Calgary Flames tomorrow, Tuesday, September 27th. As to get playing time for many different players, Seattle has split their squad in two. The second half of the Kraken roster, including fourth overall pick Shane Wright, will take on a mostly star-less Flames team. Puck drop is at 7PM PST inside of Climate Pledge Arena.