Breaking Down the Kraken’s 7 Game Losing Streak

The Seattle Kraken are in a tailspin, having lost their past seven games. This is now the second-longest losing streak this season for them, only behind the nine-game streak they faced between Dec. 15 and Jan. 15. Here is a breakdown of what has gone wrong over the past seven games.

No Scoring Means No Winning

During this losing streak, the Kraken have scored more than two goals only once and have a 1.86 goals-for per game. The team has 13 goals during the seven games and no individual player has scored more than twice since Feb. 14, when the streak started. The offence has completely dried up, and it is the main reason why they have only one point over the streak.

Seattle Kraken Bench
Seattle Kraken Bench (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

While individual play can be attributed to the lack of goals, the overall team play has been concerning. The Kraken have been outscored 25-9 at even strength during the streak and outshot 163-198. This means that they are averaging 23 shots on goal at even strength-per-game.

Teams can still win with low shot totals if they are at least creating high danger scoring chances. For the Kraken, they have created 56, or eight per game. The result has been them scoring seven of their nine even-strength goals off of high danger chances. The base is there for success; the team has just gotten unlucky and run into hot goaltenders the last few weeks. If they continue to apply pressure, create high danger chances and start generating more shots on goal, they should find a way to break out of this losing streak sooner rather than later.

Kraken Goaltending Once Again an Issue

As it has been all season, the Kraken’s goaltending has been lacklustre. Both Philipp Grubauer and Chris Driedger have sub .900 save percentages (SV%) during the seven games while each registering over a 3.5 goals-against average (GAA). When a team is having trouble scoring goals, they need their goaltenders to step up and hold down the fort. If not, these types of streaks tend to happen.

Related: Seattle Kraken Stats Round-Up: McCann, Oleksiak, Grubauer & More

While they have struggled, there have been a few positive performances. Grubauer held the Flames to two goals on 37 shots while Driedger stopped 41 of 45 versus the Canucks. The problem is, these performances are few and far between. As a team at even strength, the Kraken have a .878 SV%. They have allowed an average of 4.14 goals against per game despite only facing 33.7 shot attempts against. Until this team can get consistent goaltending, success is going to be very difficult to achieve.

Kraken Having Trouble in the Faceoff Dot

Seattle has had problems this season when it comes to winning faceoffs. Before the seven games, they had a 48.5 percent win percentage in 48 games which ranked 22nd in the NHL. During the streak, however, they have struggled immensely, only winning 44.6 percent of all draws. They have seen regression in every zone and situation except while on the power play, which is a major problem.

Winning faceoffs, especially in your own zone, is critical to success as it gives teams a chance to possess the puck instead of chase it. In the defensive zone over the past seven games, the Kraken have a 44.9 percent win percentage which is down from the 47.8 percent average before the streak started. It gets worse when they are on the penalty kill as they only win the faceoff 39.4 percent of the time. This is not a huge drop from the 40.8 percent win percentage prior, but dropping below 40 percent should set off some alarms.

Yanni Gourde Seattle Kraken
Yanni Gourde, Seattle Kraken (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

As for individual performances, the only centers above 50 percent in overall faceoff win percentage are Calle Järnkrok and Morgan Geekie. The issue is, these two are not the ones taking the draw the majority of the time. Alex Wennberg, who is the team’s leader in faceoffs, has a 47.4 percent win percentage while Yanni Gourde, who is second, has a 37 percent win percentage. All of these numbers are deceiving, however, as only Geekie has a win percentage of 50 percent or higher at even strength.

The Kraken need to find a way to start winning faceoffs again. This could mean bringing in new players or trying wingers out in the faceoff dot. While faceoffs are not the biggest problem this team faces, it has dragged the team down, especially as of late.

Kraken On Path to Break Previous Record

Based on the Kraken’s schedule, this streak could easily break the nine gamer set earlier this season. Their next four games are against the Nashville Predators, Washington Capitals, Carolina Hurricanes and Toronto Maple Leafs. The good news is they have already defeated Nashville, Washington and Carolina once this season but will need complete team efforts if they want to succeed a second time. The Kraken have the tools to end this streak, it is just a matter of if they are able to put it all together and win a game for the first time since Feb. 11.

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