From the moment the first puck dropped at Climate Pledge Arena in October, the Kraken and Canucks were supposed to have a heated rivalry. However, things haven’t gone as planned. The rivalry, if you can call it that, has been entirely one-sided with the Canucks winning all three games by a combined score of 14-6. Despite the lack of fireworks so far, the Kraken have one final opportunity to kickstart the cross-border rivalry this season. If things break right earlier in the day (VGK wins in regulation), the Kraken could mathematically eliminate the Canucks from playoff contention by winning tonight’s game. While Seattle would still lose the season series, it would be a fine feather in their cap going into next season.
Reminder that we’ll be doing a Patreon-exclusive ECH Live Commentary during the game tonight! All patrons in our Watch Party Tier can join us for live reaction and discussion throughout the game with our great community of patrons. If you want to subscribe to our Patreon and get access to ECH Live Commentary and other perks, here’s our Patreon page.
Opponent Spotlight – Vancouver Canucks
The Canucks made a furious late push towards a playoff spot, starting the month of April on a 6-0-1 run. But after dropping their last three games, they’re are down to the slimmest of playoff odds. How slim? According to MoneyPuck.com, the Canucks currently have a 0.1% chance of making the playoffs. They need eight separate games to all fall their way. Suffice to say, they’re facing a steep uphill battle.
The engine that’s driven the Canucks offensively all season is J.T. Miller, who’s having a career-high 96 point season. He’ll aim to hit the 100 point mark for the first time in his career over these last three games of the season. Miller’s five career assists against the Kraken are tied for second-most of any player.
- Second period – Putting a full third of the game as a key may seem too vague, but those who watched the first two games of this road trip will understand the importance of managing the second period. The Kraken have been outscored 8-0 in the second period over their last two games and it proved to be their undoing both times. Just holding up defensively and staying even tonight would be a win.
- Get in shooting lanes – When these two teams last met, the Canucks peppered Chris Driedger with 46 shots on goal. That remains the most shots allowed by the Kraken in any game. While Driedger did make 41 saves, far too many pucks were able to make it through to him. Clogging the shooting lanes will force the Canucks to rethink plays in the offensive zone.
- Powerplay – Seattle’s powerplay has looked as dynamic as ever since Matty Beniers was added to the top unit. They’ll be in a position to feast on a Canucks PK that ranks dead last in the NHL at 73.9%.
Did You Know…
Did you know two star goalies can coexist on the same team? While most teams would struggle to manage the egos of two #1 goalies, the Canucks made it work from 2008-2013 when Roberto Luongo and Cory Schneider shared the crease. The two netminders got along perfectly, with no drama whatsoever.
ECH Postgame Live
Join us after the game for ECH Postgame Live! After every Kraken game this season, RJ and Dylan will do a live postgame show on the Emerald City Hockey YouTube Channel. ECH Postgame live will include a postgame wrap-up, analysis, and a live Q&A with viewers. Join the community of Kraken fans who tune in after the game to talk Kraken hockey!