Rising Tide: The Kraken Fandom is Growing

The Kraken had a sophomore season for the ages.

First in the Pacific division for portions of the regular season schedule, they slipped somewhat as the months rolled by, but comfortably made the playoffs as the first Wildcard seed. That alone would have satisfied the fanbase, and represented a massive step forward for the National Hockey League’s newest club, but the Kraken wanted more than making the dance.

They dethroned the defending Stanley Cup champion Colorado Avalanche and took another very talented team in the Dallas Stars right to the brink, losing a tightly fought, seven game series and starting their offseason about three weeks too soon. To call the season a raging success still sounds like an understatement, and fan expectations are likely to rise considerably after the team’s 2022/23 performance.

The great results had a secondary effect as well, as shown by this market research (courtesy of Betway):

The table below ranks the NHL teams based on fanbase growth since the first day of the playoffs:

RankTeamTotal online followersNo. of new followers since playoffs started
1Pittsburgh Penguins2,678,58239,180
2Toronto Maple Leafs1,336,59538,592
3Seattle Kraken548,46336,262
4New Jersey Devils486,22323,842
5Edmonton Oilers813,67621,665
6Boston Bruins1,628,24720,400
7Florida Panthers351,79918,317
8New York Rangers1,301,41615,361
9Carolina Hurricanes478,60513,808
10Chicago Blackhawks1,691,27812,141
*follower count from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok. Data accurate as of 05/15/2023

The fanbase is growing (an increase of 6.1% for Seattle since the playoffs began), but it’s no surprise. This place has always been a hockey market and the packed and boisterous arena makes one wonder what precisely took the NHL so long to grant Seattle its expansion franchise. The team is good, the city is an attractive place for professional athletes to live and the ownership and management have rarely put a foot wrong in terms of marketing and community outreach. The tide most certainly is rising and it’s not just in North America.

There’s a Seattle Kraken Norway group, with 300 members:

A France one with over 1000 followers:

And our own little website gets a high number of visits as well (which we thank you all dearly for!). A stat that peaked during the playoff run naturally, but hey! Rising tides and all that. As we settle into the summer we’ll be looking forward to the Entry Draft (June 28th), where the Kraken have 9 selections to make in the first four rounds. And that will be followed closely by the free agency frenzy on the 1st of July, a yearly tradition where the league’s worst GMs make franchise altering decisions that ultimately end in disaster.

That said, there are deals to be found and the recent success may have our own general manager thinking more about the immediate future that he has been over the past two summers.

Many said it after Game 7 ended but I’ll repeat the words here because they’re worth saying twice: the future is bright. The team is good, and not only was their success this season a real thing, it’s a repeatable one as well. Minor tweaks are all that the roster needs to continue its upward trajectory.

Have a great summer, and go squids!