The Seattle Kraken has been expanding rapidly, with the latest expansion opening up a brand new office in San Francisco. With rumors of potential trade candidates and more, this is everything you need to know about the Seattle Kraken.
The seattle kraken expansion draft bruins is a story that has been making waves in the hockey world. This article will give you an overview of all the latest news and rumors surrounding this possible trade.
July is known as “cottage season” in the NHL. After the July 1st free agency frenzy, players and executives disappear for a few weeks, retiring to summer homes and vacation destinations all over the globe (though in Canada, the house is nearly usually referred to as a cottage).
Nothing about the year 2023 is normal. On July 7, the Tampa Bay Lightning won the Stanley Cup. On July 8, the buyout window opened. Over the weekend, protection lists for the Seattle Kraken expansion draft were due. The expansion draft will take place on Wednesday, and the entrance draft will take place on Friday and Saturday. Then, on July 28, comes free agency.
Last week, one front office official told me, “Craziest three-week period I recall in my tenure in the league.” He’s been in the business for almost two decades.
I’ve been on the phone for the last few days, trying to get a sense of what to anticipate this week and beyond.
Kraken zeroing in on a network administrator?
The Kraken will need at least two goaltenders, and it seems that they have chosen one: Florida Panthers goaltender Chris Driedger. In fact, after being selected by the Panthers, Driedger is expected to sign a multi-year contract; I’ve heard it’ll be in the three-year range.
If Driedger is goalkeeper 1A, Seattle has a number of excellent, youthful, and cost-conscious alternatives. On Sunday, I contacted an NHL goalie coach to ask who he would choose as Driedger’s backup. Kaapo Kahkonen of the Minnesota Wild or Vitek Vanecek of the Washington Capitals are his choices.
Let’s work something out.
The Kraken hasn’t said much, but from what I’ve heard, they’ve been playing hardball behind the scenes for the last several weeks. Seattle’s original asking price was a first-round selection as compensation, at the very least, if a club sought assurance that one of its unprotected players wouldn’t be chosen. Some side transactions, I think, were struck.
The Kraken are also anticipated to quickly flip some of their expansion selections, similar to how the Vegas Golden Knights did, so expect them to be active.
George McPhee, the former general manager of the Golden Knights, talks about how other NHL clubs may approach the forthcoming Seattle Kraken expansion draft.
Who’s planning a trip to Seattle?
On Sunday, when the protection lists were released, I polled one experienced player, one notable agent, one assistant coach, and one front office official, asking: Who are the most obvious Kraken pickups? Yanni Gourde (Lightning) and Max Domi were the two most popular responses (Blue Jackets).
Domi is coming off a bad season and underwent shoulder surgery in June, which will keep him out until November at the earliest. He is, though, a former 70-point scorer on a contract that is about to expire, making him a good player to trade before the deadline.
What about Gourde? Due to their financial crisis, the Lightning sent many of quality players to the Kraken, but Gourde is a tough, do-it-all center around whom a club can construct a line.
Two blueliners who could be a good match
Calvin de Haan (Blackhawks) and Brannon Dillon (Capitals) were also mentioned by the experienced player, who is a defender.
The player said, “Both of those players are on excellent deals.” “For a long time, De Haan has been linked to the Kraken. Dillon played junior hockey for the Seattle Thunderbirds of the Western Hockey League, so I’m sure they’ll want some locals.”
Brenden Dillon would be an excellent addition to the Kraken blue line, bringing him back to the WHL’s Seattle Thunderbirds, where he played as a junior. Getty Images/Patrick Smith
The top of the draft is beginning to take shape.
The Buffalo Sabres are expected to choose Owen Power with the first overall selection in Friday’s draft, and it would be remarkable if the 6-foot-6 defender isn’t selected.
Last week, one scout told me, “I’d be just as shocked if Matty Beniers didn’t go to Seattle [at No. 2].”
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When I spoke with the Massachusetts native Beniers last week, he told me that Patrice Bergeron was his hero and that he modeled his game after him. “That’s a man I’ve always respected after watching him pretty much my entire life,” Beniers remarked. “So I’ve tried to mold myself into that kind of player, a responsible two-way forward with playmaking abilities and a high hockey IQ.”
Beniers is also known for his powerful motor. Beniers would go No. 2 in the draft, according to the scout, not just because of his skill, but also because Seattle will have a tougher time finding centers later in the selection.
Klimovich, how far will he go?
Danila Klimovich of Belarus, a surprise selection in this year’s draft, may slip into the first round. Klimovich, like Yegor Sharangovich (No. 141 overall to the Devils in 2018), came late to the game, in part due to his lesser exposure as a Belarusian.
Klimovich didn’t have the opportunity to play in North America until this year’s IIHF under-18 world championships in Texas, and boy, did he make an impact.
“Every GM vacated the beautiful rink in Dallas and went to the s—-ty one where the Belarusians were playing at the same time the US and Finland were playing,” one individual who attended the event claimed. “They had to see Klimovich for themselves since he was so excellent.”
That competition, the center scored six goals in five games.
Wait, Ovi is on the list of those who are available?
The Capitals were able to protect an extra forward, Daniel Sprong, by removing upcoming unrestricted free agent Alex Ovechkin off their protection list.
The fact that Ovechkin is unprotected is just a formality. The majority of league observers think the Caps and their captain have reached a handshake agreement, or at the very least a framework for a new contract, which should be revealed after the expansion draft.
Could Luke Hughes (center) join his siblings Jack (left) or Quinn (right) on the 2023 draft team? Getty Images/NHLI/Dave Sandford
Reunion of the Hughes family
“If Luke Hughes is available for them,” I was informed in May, “the Devils or the Canucks will have a hard time not grabbing him.”
Then there was the draft lottery. The ninth selection went to the Vancouver Canucks, who had Quinn Hughes, a 21-year-old forward. The Devils will choose No. 4 with 20-year-old Jack Hughes.
At this moment, it’s difficult to see Luke Hughes dropping to No. 9. The majority of individuals I’ve spoken to believe New Jersey will choose the Hughes brothers’ younger sibling. If Hughes isn’t available, the Devils seem to be interested in Swedish defender Simon Edvinsson.
Is there a goalkeeper in the top ten?
Goalie Jesper Wallstedt is being considered by clubs in the top ten of the draft. When I talked with Wallstedt over the phone last week, I was struck by his maturity. He grew up idolizing Henrik Lundqvist and even attended goalkeeper camps with him as a youngster.
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The past three years, drafting a goalkeeper in the first round hasn’t felt as risky or uncommon. Spencer Knight was chosen at No. 13 by Florida in 2019, while Nashville selected Yaroslav Askarov at No. 11 by Nashville last year, who was regarded as an outstanding prospect.
Sebastian Cossa is the other goalkeeper expected to be chosen in the first round this year, along with Wallstedt. I really liked chatting with him and discovering that he was a five-year football player who played center and linebacker. It’s uncommon to see a football/hockey player.
Some clubs prefer Cossa over Wallstedt, so it will be interesting to see where they both finish up.
Chicago is on the lookout for a goalkeeper.
Even though the Blackhawks selected a goalkeeper in the second round last year (Drew Commesso), it wouldn’t be surprising if they selected another goalie in the first round this year.
I’ve also heard the Blackhawks may be in the market for a goaltender in free agency; there are lots of experienced alternatives available.
New Jersey, are you prepared to spend?
The New Jersey Devils are attempting to speed up their reconstruction, with the goal of becoming more competitive in 2023-22. The first move was to acquire Ryan Graves from the Avalanche in a trade.
I’ve heard they’re also looking for an experienced goalkeeper (just like last year, when they signed Corey Crawford, who retired before suiting up in a game for them).
After failing to deal Henrique last year, the Anaheim Ducks decided to leave him unprotected. If he isn’t chosen, the Ducks are expected to attempt to trade him this year, but they may have to keep part of his $5.85 million contract.
The Seth Jones trade rumors have been flying thick and fast. Icon Sportswire/Danny Murphy
What’s new in the Seth Jones trade?
It’s difficult to predict when a Seth Jones trade will take place, since Columbus GM Jarmo Kekalainen isn’t hesitant to take risks, such as holding on to a player who doesn’t want to re-sign on an expiring deal to begin the season.
Jones is expected to be traded at some time, but his position isn’t as precarious as that of Jack Eichel in Buffalo or Vladimir Tarasenko in St. Louis. The erosion of confidence between player and club seems to be irreversible in both Eichel’s and Tarasenko’s situations.
What are your thoughts on the Isles’ choices?
When I noticed Josh Bailey and Jordan Eberle were both available from the Islanders on the protection lists, my immediate thought was that GM Lou Lamoriello had struck a deal with Kraken GM Ron Francis. That may be true, however it was pointed out to me that cost-cutting is a common topic on the Islanders’ protection list.
Because Lamoriello runs a tight ship, the Islanders are frequently the most difficult club to obtain information on. However, we know that the Islanders are focused on re-signing restricted free agents Anthony Beauvillier and (particularly) Adam Pelech. Re-signing UFA Casey Cizikas seems to be high on Lamoriello’s priority list.
If Seattle chooses Bailey or Eberle, the door will be open for Kyle Palmieri to re-sign or the newly bought-out Zach Parise to step in.
New York also needs to replace Nick Leddy, so the Isles joining the Ryan Suter courting wouldn’t be unexpected.
The Seattle Kraken expansion buzz, trade candidates, everything we’re hearing is a blog that covers the latest Seattle Kraken news. Reference: how does nhl expansion draft work.
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