The Bible advices one to turn the other cheek. Seattle Kraken defensemen Carson Soucy didn’t heed that advice and it probably cost the Kraken last night’s game against the Winnipeg Jets, a 3-2 overtime loss at Climate Pledge Arena.
The Kraken held a 2-1 lead with 26 seconds remaining when Soucy was called for a roughing penalty when he punched Winnipeg’s Pierre Luc Dubois in the back of the head. Soucy was retaliating for a nasty slash by Dubois moments earlier.
The Jets had already pulled their goalie giving them a two-man advantage. Up to this point, Martin Jones (playing his 400th NHL game) had stymied any effort by the Jets to tie the game. It may have been Jones’ best game of the season in a streak where he’s turned in a quality performance every game.
But with time running out, Blake Wheeler tapped in a rebound of Kyle Connor’s shot, over a sprawled Jones with only five seconds left in regulation. Mark Scheifele then scored the game winner in overtime. The Kraken (8-5-3) did pick up a point in the standings for the regulation tie, but dropped their third overtime game of the season. Winnipeg moves back into first place in the Central Division with a 9-4-1 record.
“It was a bad penalty,” said Seattle coach Dave Hakstol. “There was a confusing piece in there. The whistle was blown when we didn’t have the puck, so we assumed both men were going to the box. But it was an undisciplined penalty and that’s what we’ll focus on.”
“We put ourselves in position to win the game, and three minor penalties (in the third) is probably the thing that stands out,” said Hakstol. “When you do that in the third period, down to the last 30 seconds, that’s a tough way to close out a hockey game. Eight penalties are too many.”
The game’s finish also took away from a highlight goal scored by Brandon Tanev in the third period. With a Winnipeg defenseman closing in, Tanev tapped the puck ahead, stepped around the defender, and regained possession -basically he passed the puck to himself. Then Tanev fired one past Winnipeg goalkeeper David Riitich.
“I’ve got good linemates,” Tanev humbly said after the game. “I always play with Yanni Gourde and lately the puck has been bouncing right for me.”
Eberle’s goal came off a rebound of Vince Dunn’s shot. Dunn one-timed a pass from Andre Burakovsky, who’s been a power-play standout this season. The Kraken had a 5-on-3 advantage at the time.
The Kraken had opportunities to increase their lead. A second goal by Eberle was disallowed when he was called for batting the puck home with his stick above the crossbar. Then Riitich, playing only his third game of the season, stopped Gourde on a breakaway at the tail end of a Kraken penalty kill.
Referees Eric Furlatt and Beau Halkidis didn’t have a great night. Seattle’s Adam Larsson was whistled off for what some would call `a ticky-tack’ penalty and moments later Scheifele tied the game with a wrist shot from the right circle.
Both teams had long penalty-killing streaks come to an end. Winnipeg – which has allowed the fewest goals in the NHL this season -had killed 14 in a row prior to Eberle’s goal. Seattle had killed off 18 straight before Scheifele’s marker.
The Kraken then got a break when Burakovsky cross-checked Winnipeg’s Nate Schmidt into the boards and no penalty was called. The Jets went after Burakovsky starting a mini-line brawl that included Wheeler and the Kraken’s Will Borgen trading punches.
When things settled down, the refs gave Wheeler four minutes, his teammate Brenden Dillon two minutes, and the Kraken’s Borgen two minutes. That gave Seattle a 5-4 advantage for four minutes.
The Kraken were again unable to cash in an opportunity. Tanev hit the post on a shot and Jared McCann and Jaden Schwartz also shot wide from in-close.
After that, the Jets seemed to take the game over. With Soucy in the box for interference on former Kraken Mason Appleton, Winnipeg had seven shots on a two-minute power play. Jones turned everything aside, his best stop, a pad save on Dubois where he had to slide across the net.
“It was disappointing to lose late,” said Jones. “We needed to stay out of the penalty box and not give away so many pucks.”
The Kraken play the fourth game of a six-game homestand on Thursday night against the New York Rangers. “We need to regroup and take a breath,” said Tanev. “This was a hard fought game. Not the results we wanted but we’ll move forward.”
- The Kraken unveiled their third `alternate’ uniform last night. Seattle took the ice with a powder blue jersey with a patch of black in the center.
- While Climate Pledge Arena boasts loud, boisterous crowds the Kraken are only 3-4-2 on home ice- 1-1-1- on their recent homestand. The team needs to improve its home record as the season progresses.
- Defenseman Gustav Oloffson made his Kraken debut last night. Oloffson replaced the injured Jamie Oleksiak in the Kraken lineup. Oloffson had been playing at Coachella Valley in the American Hockey League. Last night was his first NHL game since 2019 when he suited up for the Montreal Canadiens. Cale Fleury made his season debut Friday night replacing Oleksiak.
- Winnipeg’s Adam Lowry is the son of Kraken first-year assistant coach Dave Lowry. Adam’s one of the Jets’ top penalty killers and the elder Lowry has been instrumental in the improvement of the Kraken’s penalty kill. Dave Lowry was interim head coach of the Jets late last season when Paul Maurice was fired.
- Mason Appleton, a Kraken expansion pick last season, has been one of the Jets’ top penalty killers. He caught a stick on the hand and didn’t play the third period.
- The Jets were 6-0-1 before losing to the Calgary Flames Saturday night. Connor Hellebuyck has won seven games between the pipes with a .935 save percentage and two shutouts. Last night marked only the third game this season Hellebuyck hasn’t played.
S- Jordan Eberle (Vince Dunn, Andre Burakovsky) PPG 7:30.
W- Mark Scheifele (Sam Gagner, Kyle Connor) PPG 10:52
S- Brandon Tanev (Yanni Gourde, Oliver Bjorkstrand) 7:02. W- Brandon Wheeler (Kyle Connor, Neil Pionk) 19:55.
S- Scheifele (Josh Morrissey) 0:34.
Shots on Goal- Winnipeg 31, Seattle 21
Penalty minutes- Winnipeg 10, Seattle 16.
Referees- Eric Furlatt, Beau Halkidus Linesman- Travis Toomey, Tommy Hughes
Three Stars- 1. Mark Scheifele, W. 2. Brandon Tanev, S. 3. Jordan Eberle, S