The Seattle Kraken have had many memorable moments this season. From the first win in franchise history to the first game for the future face of the organization, it has been an exciting ride. Here are the top five player performances from the 2021-22 season.
5. Brandon Tanev – Oct. 26, 2021, vs. Montreal Canadiens
On Oct. 26, 2021, the Brandon Tanev show arrived in Seattle. He scored twice, delivered six hits and forced one takeaway in 14:52 of ice time. His performance helped the Kraken capture their second win of the season and a first home win in franchise history.
There were many Tanev performances from this season that were special, but his game against Montreal stands up as the best. This was the game that arguably cemented him as a fan favourite in Seattle. Although his season was cut short due to injury, this performance still stands out months later.
4. Jaden Schwartz – Nov. 21, 2021, vs. Washington Capitals
The Kraken have had one four-point game in franchise history, and that belongs to Jaden Schwartz. The former Stanley Cup winner put on a show versus the Capitals in late November, scoring once and adding three assists in a 5-2 win versus Washington. He also had five shots on goal, blocked a shot and threw a hit.
Related: Kraken’s Schwartz Playing Well Since Return From Injury
Unfortunately for Schwartz, he struggled this season, and just when his game started to pick up, he went down with an injury and missed more than half the season. He was the Kraken’s big free-agent signing up front this past offseason, with big hopes placed on his shoulders at the beginning of the season. Hopefully, fans will be able to see more performances like this one in 2022-23 when he is fully healthy again.
3. Philipp Grubauer Nov. 24, 2021, vs. Carolina Hurricanes
Philipp Grubauer’s performance this season has been disappointing. Despite that, there were a few games where he showed why he was a Vezina finalist last season. Although he had two shutouts, his best performance was a 2-1 win versus the Carolina Hurricanes on Nov. 24, 2021.
The Carolina Hurricanes came into this contest, having won 14 of their first 17 games. Their lineup contained a talented group of forwards, including Sebastian Aho, Andrei Svechnikov and Seth Jarvis, while being backed by projected Vezina Trophy candidate this season, Frederik Andersen. Despite being outshot 36-22, Grubauer stood on his head, making 35 saves for the victory. This was his best game this season and arguably the best game by a Kraken goaltender in 2021-22.
2. Matty Beniers – Apr. 16, 2021, vs. New Jersey Devils
It took Matty Beniers no time at all to get acclimated to the NHL, with his second career game being his best this season. On Apr. 16 versus the New Jersey Devils, the 2021 second overall pick put on a show scoring his first career goal while adding three shots, blocking a shot and throwing two hits. He also went six for 10 in the faceoff dot, including going two for two in the defensive zone.
While Beniers was good in his first NHL game versus the Flames, he looked way more comfortable in this game versus the Devils. His goal was a heads-up play where he drove the net hard and scored on a rebound, and he seemed energized playing in front of the home fans for the first time in his career. Based on the way he has played in his short stint with the Kraken this season, expect him to make this list year after year.
1. Jordan Eberle – Nov. 4, 2021, vs. Buffalo Sabres
Jordan Eberle’s performance versus the Buffalo Sabres produced the only hat-trick in franchise history. Not only was it a hat trick, but it was the rare natural hat trick where a player scores three consecutive goals. This was the fourth hat trick of his career.
While it was expected Eberle would bring more offence, he will finish the season with over 20 goals. It will be the first time since 2017-18 he has hit the 20-goal mark and the seventh time he has done it in his career. While overall fans may be disappointed with his production, they will always have his night versus Buffalo to look back on from this season.
A Lot of Special Memories After Year One
There were many more special moments and performances this year, including Ryan Donato scoring the first goal in Kraken history or Mark Giordano scoring and plotting two assists in his first game against the Flames that could have been mentioned but just missed out on the top five. With the arrival of Beniers and the team playing well down the stretch, it is clear the Kraken have a bright future ahead.