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Hakstol Fired in Seattle

April 29, 2024, 10:12 PM ET [17 Comments]
Sean Maloughney
Seattle Kraken Blogger • RSSArchiveCONTACT
Today Ron Francis and the Seattle Kraken announced that coach Dave Hakstol as well as assistant coach Paul McFarland would not be returning behind the bench in 24/25. Hakstol was the first coach in Kraken history. Under his tutelage, the Kraken finished 30th in the NHL in their inaugural season, a shocking 12th in the NHL in 22/23, and 25th in the NHL this past season.

The high point of Hakstol's tenure was easily the 22/23 season where the Kraken not only surprised the NHL by making the playoffs but bouncing the previous Stanley Cup Champions in 7 games before losing to the Stars in a close 7 game series.

Some people are shocked by this move but quite frankly I am not. The Kraken simply have not improved much under Hakstol. The 22/23 season was an exciting season to watch but all of the metrics suggested that this was an overachieving team, a reality that crashed back to earth this season.

Not making the playoffs this season isn't the end of the world for such a young team but it seems that management simply did not believe that Hakstol was the guy who was going to get this team to the next level.

Maybe less surprising than the Hakstol firing was the firing of assistant coach Paul McFarland as it was McFarland who ran the PP, something that has not been great throughout the three years of Kraken hockey. Here is how the Kraken PP has matched up against the NHL in the past three seasons:

23/24: 20.7% - 17th
22/23: 20.2% - 20th
21/22: 18.4% - 28th

Now the search begins for a new coach. There are a wide variety of names out there, including but not limited to Jay Woodcroft, Craig Berube, Todd McLellan, Gerard Gallant, Deav Evason, and Bruce Boudreau. It will be interesting to see how quickly a new coach is brought into the fold. I would assume Francis would want to have someone in the position prior to the NHL Draft.

Thanks for reading!
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