The Vancouver Canucks faced the 32nd NHL team, the Seattle Kraken for the first time in the league’s history.
While it was preseason, the game gave a lot of promise for this rivalry for the upcoming season as the Kraken edge out our Canucks for the 5-3 win.
The Canucks haven’t started this rivalry off in the best possible way after letting a brilliant start to the game fade away with a lot of penalties that allowed Seattle to get a grip of the game and control it for the rest of the two periods.
Canucks claimed the victory in the post-game shootout between the two teams after Jack Rathbone comes out as the king of breakaways in this one going two for two on the day.
If a fan missed the first period and tuned in for the second and third, they would think that the Canucks truly looked awful. They were struggling to keep possession of the puck, struggling to stay disciplined, and to string some passes together, but in all honesty the Canucks looked exciting in the first period even without the magic of Elias Pettersson and Quinn Hughes.
Silly mistakes and penalties made the Canucks play on the backfoot for the majority of the game as they lost the first-ever matchup against the Morgan Geekie led Kraken.
The ongoing debate between Olli Juolevi and Jack Rathbone has been settled.
To put it as plain and simple as one can, Rathbone affects the game in ways that Olli Juolevi can’t and won’t.
Despite Rathbone leaving his team a man short for two minutes in the first period, he came right out of the penalty box as the team survived the penalty-kill and scored.
He picked the puck up at center ice after a deflection from a shot and was off to a breakaway against Phillip Grubauer, a breakaway that just felt right for some reason, and Rathbone showed us why – as he put the Canucks up in the game and buried the first-ever Canucks preseason goal against the Kraken.
Rathbone was also a major part of the Canucks second goal, as his chemistry with Brock Boeser shone through on the power play when he dished several accurate passes onto the stick of Boeser.
One of the passes resulting in an assist for Rathbone as Boeser found the back of the net on an unfortunate bounce for the Seattle Kraken.
Rathbone finished the game with two points, while Juolevi finished the game with another highlight of him looking silly.
The narrative in the media during training camp was that Rathbone is better and that he has to be the one that gets that final spot on the roster and in this game against the Seattle team he really seemed to solidified his name in this race.
He was trusted on the power play unit as mentioned before and didn’t disappoint.
As for Juolevi, he played some penalty-kill minutes but was unfortunately at the forefront of a poor goal conceded in the third period which saw the puck trickle through his legs as well as Spencer Martin’s legs straight off a faceoff.
Not a good start to the preseason for the young Finnish defender, a fairly underwhelming game overall.