Should Seattle Be A Buyer?
The NHL world is currently abuzz from the blockbuster trade between the Calgary Flames and Vancouver Canucks for Elias Lindholm. The Canucks are clearly loading up and preparing for a long playoff run.
Currently Seattle sits just 2 points outside of a Wild Card position and is battling with the likes of the Blues, Kings, Predators, and Coyotes for one of the final spots. Seattle could also still end up in one of the top 3 spots in the Pacific if the LA Kings continue to fall off.
This Lindholm trade might kickstart the rest of the NHL to start loading up on talent and kick of the trade deadline season earlier than usual. Should the Kraken get involved in the arms race? I remain unconvinced.
The Kraken went on a fantastic run through December and early January and rolled off a nine game winning streak to get themselves back into the playoff race. Since then the team has gone 2-5-1 including their most recent loss, getting shutout by the San Jose Sharks.
If the Kraken were to make the playoffs, it would likely be against the Avalanche or the Canucks as a Wild Card team. If they managed to beat out the Kings for 3rd in the Pacific they would face off against the Edmonton Oilers as of today. Looking at this team, do they have the roster to compete against any of those teams in a seven game series?
This is obviously sounding negative so let me first say the future for the Kraken is bright. There are some highly talented pieces on this roster and the core is starting to shape up. Daccord is looking like a legit starter, Vince Dunn is showing he is a legit #1 defenseman, and the forward core has a solid group of skill and complimentary pieces. This is a team that will continue to improve.
Is this a Cup winning team this season though? That I just am not buying, nor do I think they are just one piece away from becoming one. The Kraken could trade a 1st round pick and some prospects for Jake Guentzel or try and build a package for Chychrun and Tarasenko, but unless a number of other things go right I don't see them going on a long run.
This team still lacks an elite centre. Beniers is young and can still become that guy but he's still figuring things out in the NHL. McCann is a phenomenal player but I still think he is best suited as a top line winger or second line center.
I could see this team making a couple of different adds before the deadline; either a player with some term that will help them past this season, or a depth rental option that could still be signed leading up to Free Agency.
This Kraken team is still a young team and right now I would rather hold onto high round draft picks to either draft more high end prospects, or use those picks to acquire players with term that will help the team next season and beyond.
If the West is about to get into an arms race, the Kraken should remain on the sidelines and be opportunistic should the right deal come by.
Thanks for reading.