The New York Islanders traveled across the country to face the Seattle Kraken on Tuesday evening, and the home team took a period and a half to show signs of life before dropping their fifth game in a row with a 5–2 result. They were part of history, though, as Islanders veteran Zdeno Chara tied Chris Chelios for the most games played by a defenseman in NHL history with 1,651.
Playing the second game of a back-to-back, following a 5–2 loss to the Vancouver Canucks the night before, the Kraken never seemed to get their engines going. Seattle managed only four shots in the first period while surrendering 13 Islanders shots. A goal by Brock Nelson and Zach Parise’s first of the night had the visitors up 2–0 at the first intermission. Parise’s goal was originally waved off for goaltender interference, but reversed by the war room in Toronto because Mark Giordano pushed Parise into Philipp Grubauer.
The Kraken had a more engaging second period, but not before two more Islanders goals from Kyle Palmieri and Casey Cizikas had the visitors up 4–0 at the halfway point of the game and New York was leading in shots on goal 24–6. Seattle’s Yanni Gourde broke the shutout at the 11:18 point of the second, but that was all the ground that the Kraken were able to gain in the second period. Shots still favored New York heavily at 27–15.
Keeping with their “too little, too late” theme, Seattle forward Riley Sheahan opened the third period with a goal to cut the Islanders’ lead to 4–2. This was all the scoring for Seattle, as Parise wrapped up the evening with an empty-net goal for his second tally of the night with two minutes remaining in regulation. The final shot totals were 36–25 in a game that Seattle was never in.
⚓ Vince Dunn, Yanni Gourde and Calle Jarnkrok were all -3 on the night. The pair of Dunn and Jeremy Lauzon was brutal, giving up 16 attempts against and generating only eight, in 9:52 together. I will continue to say this: Lauzon is not a very good defender. This begs the question of why Dave Hakstol would put Lauzon with Dunn, who is not a great defender in his own end.
⚓ For all those truthers out there that claim face-offs are overrated: Both Seattle goals came almost directly off face-off wins.
⚓ Playing in his first game against his former team, Austin Czarnik was a -2 in 11:02. He had the third-worst 5-on-5 Corsi on the Kraken with 41.67%
⚓ Grubauer was, well, Grubauer. He was right on par with his season save percentage of 88.7%, saving 31 of 35 shots for an 88.6% on the evening. His defense did him no favors, but if you are going to command a top-tier goaltender’s salary, you need to play like a top-tier goaltender. Grubauer is not. He needs to steal some games and keep you in most others.
⚓ The Kraken led in even-strength shot attempts, but could not get their shots on net, especially in the second period, when they attempted 28 and only 11 made it to the net.
🔱 5-on-5 Corsi (total shot attempts) 53%–47%
🔱 5-on-5 Fenwick (Unblocked shot attempts) 55%–45%
🔱 5-on-5 High-danger chances for 52%–48%
🔱 5-on-5 Expected goals for 53%–47%
🔱 Face-off percentage 56%–44%
⚓ The Kraken are off Wednesday and host the Boston Bruins Thursday evening at Climate Pledge Arena. The puck drop is scheduled for 7 p.m. PST.