The Seattle Kraken, an expansion team in the National Hockey League (NHL), has taken the sports world by storm since its announcement in 2018. Debuted in the 2021-2022 season, the Kraken have already captured the imagination of fans with their intriguing name, unique branding, and promising roster. Their first regular season began on October 12, 2021.
The arrival of the Seattle Kraken marks the return of NHL hockey to Seattle after a 100-year hiatus. The city was previously home to the Seattle Metropolitans, who played in the Pacific Coast Hockey Association (PCHA) and became the first American team to win the Stanley Cup in 1917. The Kraken pays homage to this heritage while forging its own path in the modern era of hockey.
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The Kraken's management has been hard at work assembling a competitive roster. Led by General Manager Ron Francis, a former NHL player and executive, the team has navigated the expansion draft to select players from other NHL teams. With a favorable expansion draft format that allows the Kraken to select from an array of talented players, they have the potential to build a strong foundation right from the start.
The Seattle Kraken's inaugural season was definitely an exciting one! As a new team in the NHL, they faced the challenge of building a cohesive unit and establishing their identity on the ice. Overall, they showed great potential and had some impressive moments throughout the season.
Although the Kraken faced several challenges during their inaugural season, including offensive struggles and a season-ending injury to forward Brandon Tanev, they were able to overcome these obstacles. Their record of 29-47-6 may not have met expectations, ranking as the third-worst in the NHL, but their loyal fanbase demonstrated unwavering support. Climate Pledge Arena was packed with enthusiastic fans, leading to the Kraken having the 14th highest attendance in the league.
The team’s popularity was further reflected in record-breaking sales of jerseys and other merchandise, showcasing the tremendous enthusiasm surrounding the franchise. Notably, standout players like goaltender Philipp Grubauer and forward Jordan Eberle thrilled spectators with their exceptional performances on the ice. In fact, even Cruz, who attended a Kraken game midway through the season, had an incredible time and thoroughly enjoyed the experience.
The Kraken wrapped up the 2022-23 regular season with a remarkable achievement, establishing themselves as one of the greatest second-year expansion teams in NHL history, surpassing even the legendary Original Six era (1967-68). Seattle's sensational performance saw them earn an impressive tally of 46 victories and 100 points, a feat unmatched by any other second-year expansion team.
Seattle has long been known as a passionate sports city, and the arrival of the Kraken has only amplified this enthusiasm. The team sold out their season ticket packages within hours, highlighting the immense demand for NHL hockey in the region. The Kraken's arrival has also sparked excitement among local businesses, as the team's success is expected to have a positive impact on the local economy.
Inception and Expansion: The team was officially announced by the NHL in 2018 and began playing in the 2021-2022 season. The name "Kraken" was chosen through a fan voting process, representing the mythical sea creature often associated with the Pacific Northwest.
Home Arena: The Kraken plays their home games at the newly built Climate Pledge Arena, located at the Seattle Center. This arena is designed to be environmentally friendly and sustainable.
Team Colors and Logo: The team’s primary colors are deep sea blue, ice blue, shadow blue, boundless blue, and white. Their logo features a stylized “S” with a red eye, representing the Kraken’s mythical creature.
Division and Conference: The Seattle Kraken is a member of the Pacific Division in the Western Conference of the NHL. They compete against other teams such as the Vegas Golden Knights, Vancouver Canucks, and San Jose Sharks, among others.
Ownership: The team is owned by the Seattle Hockey Partners, a group led by majority owner David Bonderman. The ownership group also includes Hollywood producer Jerry Bruckheimer and several other prominent individuals.
Head Coach: The Kraken’s inaugural head coach is Dave Hakstol, a former head coach of the Philadelphia Flyers. Hakstol brings experience and knowledge to guide the team in their initial seasons.