Mark Giordano Embracing New Role on Seattle Kraken

After playing 15 seasons with the Calgary Flames, the Seattle Kraken selected Mark Giordano in the 2021 NHL Expansion Draft, nabbing the eight-year captain from one of its division rivals. Soon after, the Kraken named Giordano as the first captain in franchise history, marking the ninth-straight season of captaincy for the 38-year-old defenseman. Ten games into his first season outside of Calgary, he is leading the way for the Kraken defense and proving why he deserves the “C” on his chest.

Giordano Leading the Charge on Defense, Tied for Second in Points on Kraken

Giordano is tied for second on the Kraken with six points (two goals, four assists) in 10 games. No other defenseman on the team has more than three points. His 20 shots on goal are the third-most on the team, only behind forwards Brandon Tanev (24) and Jordan Eberle (24). Early into the 2021-22 season, Giordano is proving that age is only a number and he still has tons of great hockey left in the tank.

Mark Giordano, Seattle Kraken
Seattle Kraken captain Mark Giordano (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Giordano is on pace for a better season than his last with the Flames. In 2020-21, he recorded 26 points (nine goals, 17 assists) in 56 games. If he stays healthy, he will get to play a full 82-game season and can shatter his numbers from last season. The last time he played at least 70 games in a season was 2018-19, when he tallied 74 points (17 goals, 57 assists) in 78 games en route to winning the Norris Trophy as the NHL’s best defenseman. That was just two seasons ago, and with a fresh start in Seattle, it is possible Giordano ranks among the top defenders in the league yet again if he maintains his early-season performance.

Giordano Won the Norris Trophy in 2019, Still Has More to Prove with Kraken

In his Norris Trophy-winning season, Giordano was second in points among NHL defensemen and led the league with a plus-39 rating. He is just the fourth player age 35 or older to win the trophy in league history, joining the ranks of Nicklas Lidstrom (four-time winner), Doug Harvey (three-time winner) and Al MacInnis (one-time winner).

Mark Giordano Norris Trophy
Former Calgary Flames captain Mark Giordano with the Norris Trophy (THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-John Locher)

After being awarded the title of best NHL defenseman, he expressed his desire to continue performing at an elite level:

“I had a passion to play and I love the game so much,” Giordano told NHL.com. “I’m a big fan of the game. I’m willing to put in the work, and hopefully I can keep playing at this level.”

Related: Meet the Seattle Kraken: Defenseman Mark Giordano

It appears Giordano has found his game again in Seattle. Poised for a big year, look for the Kraken captain to continue chipping in offensively and leading the way for Seattle’s defense. The experience and talent that Giordano brings to the Kraken is invaluable, and it’s no wonder why he is the first to wear the “C” in franchise history. Although his current contract is set to expire at the end of this season, he could very well be wearing a Kraken uniform for years to come.

Giordano looks to get the Kraken back on track at home against the Buffalo Sabres on Thursday at 7 p.m. PT. The team is off to a rocky 3-6-1 start, tied with the Los Angeles Kings for seventh in the Pacific Division. As Seattle continues to experiment with lines and pairings, and players gain chemistry with each other, Giordano will have a great opportunity to put his talent and leadership skills on display. He is already being utilized as a mentor to the Kraken’s youth, suiting up alongside 25-year-old Vince Dunn, who is quickly emerging as one of Seattle’s most skilled young defenders. Keep an eye on Giordano to prove his doubters wrong this season.


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