The Kraken just didn’t have it in their Monday afternoon matchup with the Tampa Bay Lightning. They were outworked at times and a late push wasn’t enough to extend their franchise-long winning streak past 8 games.
First, the highlights:
- Today’s TOI leader was once again Vince Dunn, who played a very busy 24:02 in all three phases of the game.
- The Kraken seem cursed to have a slow start to the game whenever Philipp Grubauer is in net. He didn’t allow a softie early into the contest by any means — in fact he was easily the reason this game was tied in the final minutes of the third period. The team in front of him could not get the puck out of their own zone cleanly, and eventually it did come back to bite them with a late goal that gave Tampa the lead heading into intermission.
- Seriously though, Grubauer played great. He allowed 2 goals on 2.5 expected goals, per Natural Stat Trick, and ended the day with a .931 SV%. He kept the team in the game long enough to get them within one in the final minutes, before a pair of empty net goals for the Lightning sealed the deal.
- Vince Dunn extended his point streak to a franchise-record 7 games with the Kraken’s lone goal of the day. That goal arguably wasn’t even his best play of the night either. He was solid defensively in transition, especially on this play where he broke up a (John Forslund voice) jailbreak going the other way for Tampa.
Good recovery from Vince Dunn. As soon as he realizes Point snuck behind him, he turns on the jets to break up the play with some help from Larsson. pic.twitter.com/OWoqIgMLjy— Emerald City Hockey (@EmeraldCityHky) January 16, 2023
- Brandon Tanev had another few prime scoring chances that wouldn’t go in, a frustrating theme of this season. But he has still been That Dude all over the ice this year — you always know when you’re watching a shift with Turbo out there.
- The Kraken have a .523 win percentage at home and a .773 win percentage on the road this year. I don’t know what to do with that information except be hopeful that they don’t earn home-ice advantage in the playoffs.
- The Beniers - Burakovsky - Eberle line was shut down more than we’ve seen it all year. Tampa Bay outshot the Kraken 8-4 with those three skaters on the ice, and it would’ve been much worse if not for a few hard-nosed backcheck plays from Matty Beniers.
- Andrei Vasilevskiy, much to Seattle’s chagrin, is still extremely good. He stopped 22 of 23 shots on net, including 3 while the Kraken were on the power play.
- Speaking of special teams, the Kraken did not allow power play goal to their opponent for the second straight game, and have now killed off 12 of their last 14 penalties. That’s a good sign for what has been one of the few weak spots in Seattle this year.
Some charts, courtesy of Natural Stat Trick
Luckily, I suppose, the Kraken are back on the road tomorrow when they take on the Edmonton Oilers, as they seek to make it 8 straight road victories. We’ll be there with you at 6pm to see how the boys bounce back from this one.