After defeating the Sharks on Thursday night, even in one of the more inspired performances of the season, coach Dave Hakstol said he felt like the Kraken were still a ways away from where they want to be.

Friday night was a good example of that.

The Kraken allowed a goal before the first media timeout and never recovered, dropping a 5-0 game to the St. Louis Blues at Climate Pledge Arena to end their two-game winning streak. It was the third time they were shut out this season, and their 13th loss in 16 games.

Seattle has had plenty of games this season where it trailed before it has a chance to get into the routine of the game. After feeling victory for the first time in a while, the Kraken found themselves in a familiar position early, down and nearly out of it in the first period.

“We’re coming off two wins, right?” said Hakstol. “So we’re coming into a back-to-back, we want to get off to a good start. We know that we’re playing a team that’s really consistent in what they do. So in order to come out and build on the win you have to do things really efficiently with the puck. Make good plays … and not giving anything up. … You gotta make teams work for those opportunities.”

It was Seattle’s league-high 17th loss when trailing at the end of one period. Slow starts have plagued them over the past week, including their loss in St. Louis eight days ago. Hakstol admitted Thursday’s win against San Jose didn’t start well, and the Kraken also trailed against Chicago in their win Monday.

“We’ve had games where we’ve grown and games where we haven’t,” said Jordan Eberle. “I mean, no one said this was gonna be easy. … You have high expectations for yourself, but you want to just try and get better every day. And I think that’s the biggest thing that we have to really focus on.”


As purposeful and determined as Thursday’s win over the Sharks appeared — even with a few mistakes along the way — Friday felt anything but. Seattle fell to 1-5 in the second game of back-to-backs, and though that’s been a problem all season, the feeling of turning a corner Thursday all but evaporated.

That was a game where captain Mark Giordano fought, where goalie Philipp Grubauer — who did not start the second game, Joey Daccord did — played his second strong game in a row, where they responded well to losing a goal to an offsides call and the secondary scoring emerged.

Instead, the Kraken came out flat and never recovered, losing the chance to seize the very momentum they were on the verge of creating.

“You make mistakes, they’re gonna make you pay tonight so those are ways you leave the game and it’s 5-0,” said Eberle. “It just sucks. There’s a lot of things that go wrong. … We hung Joey out to dry.”

Goaltending has been the biggest net positive for the Kraken over the past week, a stark difference from previous stretches. Since last Wednesday, Seattle has allowed more than three goals just twice: the 5-2 loss to Dallas and Friday against the Blues, where Daccord had to deal with a penalty shot and poor special teams in just his third start. The scoring hasn’t come around, but more than that, they’ve been chasing games.

Giordano said this first period was a bit different than other ones where they’ve struggled, with the specific special team woes that had them trailing before they could get into the groove of the game.


“I thought today was about special teams,” said Giordano. “Those are big, shorties create momentum. We have to find a way to come in, generate (on) power plays, you got to move your feet and you got to find a way to capitalize tonight. That’s a good team over there that doesn’t give up much.”

Giordano referenced having the right mindset, and how difficult that can be when trailing in games like this. While down and trying to claw their way back into it — or even sometimes, before they are even down yet — the Kraken have given up chances the other way that burned them.

“I know a lot of the time we do have the right mindset,” he said. “I think when we get into trouble is when we get down against very structured teams and we open up. Listen, guys are trying to do the right, they’re trying to get a goal for our team to score but sometimes trying a high-risk play to get a goal is not the right way to do it. And we’ve got to get better at that.”

By the time the Blues scored three times in the third on Friday, the game was already out of reach. Though it was only 2-0, the Kraken had generated just three high-danger chances at five-on-five going into the third and they didn’t ever feel truly engaged.

First, a struggling power play ceded its best chance to the Blues, giving Tyler Bozek an easy goal from an odd-man rush with Brandon Saad while short-handed. Then, Adam Larsson took a delay-of-game penalty that led to the Blues’ second tally, a power-play strike from Brayden Schenn, from the top-ranked man advantage unit in the league.

St. Louis blocked 10 Kraken shots in the first period alone and Seattle took 15 shots in the second. The Kraken generated looks on Blues goalie Ville Husso, but none that challenged him excessively.


In the second, Riley Sheahan couldn’t convert a breakaway chance. Larsson had a rough turnover in the same frame that nearly gave the Blues a prime chance.

Little things like that have become the norm in Kraken losses. Not one colossal mistake, but an accumulation of misfortune they can’t recover from.

By the third, the Blues took complete control. Pavel Buchnevich scored 24 seconds into the final frame for the first even-strength goal of the night, then Colton Parayko’s penalty shot got past Daccord after a hook from Eberle.

The hits kept on coming and Jordan Kyrou tallied the fifth Blues goal long after it felt over.

“There’s a lot of plays that ended up in the back of our net,” said Eberle. “And it’s just frustrating.”