2023 team report cards: Seattle Kraken thrive in year two

Seattle Kraken. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)
Seattle Kraken. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images) /

Coming into the 2022-2023 NHL season, no one had high expectations for the Seattle Kraken. That will not be the case going into next year.

Seattle may be out after the second round of the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs, but they played an inspired series. After eliminating the Colorado Avalanche, the Dallas Stars were the opponents in round two.

They held two leads in the matchup against Dallas and won Game 6 to force a winner-take-all game. In the end, though, it was not meant to be for the NHL’s newest franchise.

How will the 2022-2023 season be graded for the Kraken?

In their inaugural season, the Kraken compiled only 60 points in the standings and did not come close to qualifying for the playoffs. This season, however, they totaled 100 points and entered the postseason as a wild card team.

A special shoutout goes to Jared McCann who made a name for himself this season while helping his team improve so drastically. He led the Kraken with 40 goals and 70 points, both of which were career highs that topped the personal bests he established a year ago.

Most people wrote off Seattle before the season, and the same thing happened when it drew the defending Stanley Cup champions in round one. Once again, the Kraken proved everyone wrong by disposing of the Avs in seven games.

The round-two loss was more about the talent of the Stars and less about the Kraken. Seattle played a great series but just wasn’t the better team this time around.

With that said, there is nothing not to like about this campaign in the state of Washington. To earn an additional 40 points in the standings and win a playoff round in year two speaks volumes about this organization. The Kraken are only going to get better from here.

What this group accomplished this season will serve as a tremendous stepping stone toward becoming a legitimate contender in the Western Conference.

As far as I’m concerned, the Kraken gave their fans a lot more hockey than they were supposed to this year, and that will serve them well moving forward. This is only the beginning for Seattle.

Overall, the Kraken went 46-28-8 (100 points), won in the first round (four games to three), and fell to the Stars in round two, four games to three.

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All expectations were exceeded this year. The Kraken may not quite be good enough to win the West, but they played to their full potential in a season that was a resounding success.

The Grade: A-