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Captain Francis and his Merry Band of Kraken

Created by: KrakenTheCode
Team: 2023-24 Seattle Kraken
Initial Creation Date: May 29, 2023
Published: May 30, 2023
Salary Cap Mode: Basic
Description
As I have mentioned in previous posts, I expect this offseason to be a quiet one for the Kraken. Much of the team's time and money will be put towards signing their key RFAs, of which there are several. I won't rule out the possibility of Ron Francis and co. making a big splash via the trade market, but I don't consider that option especially likely. I think the more realistic option is that the Kraken lock up their RFAs, make some under-the-radar additions to round out the depth, and integrate their promising young players onto the NHL roster. Francis's MO when it comes to trades has typically been to swap draft picks/futures for players, or vice versa. Consequently, the deals I made followed that model. Breaking offseason moves down by position group:

Forwards: The Kraken had a surplus of productive forwards, which was a key part of their success last season. With Shane Wright and Tye Kartye among others knocking on the door, the Kraken have too many capable forwards deserving of a roster spot and not enough places. That's a good problem to have, but one Seattle will have to solve. I think Ryan Donato departs as a UFA, he's going to earn a deserved pay raise and larger role that the Kraken simply cannot provide at this time. The key RFAs here are Morgan Geekie and Daniel Sprong. Geekie has steadily improved and has two skills that are lacking elsewhere on the Kraken's depth chart: a right handed shot and faceoff prowess. For those reasons, I think he is re-signed. Sprong arrived via trade last deadline and had to earn his way onto the roster this year. He's first and foremost and offense-driven player, but improved on the other end of the ice and proved to be a valuable depth scorer. However, he's due quite a bit of a pay raise, and if the Kraken wanted to bring in a major forward upgrade or open up space for one of their prospects, I think he's the likeliest trade candidate. That's the scenario I've explored here, though I stress that it's very much a possibility that Seattle maintains their extraordinary depth and keeps Sprong around. Prospects-wise, I think Wright could use some more development time in the AHL; when he's ready, he'll likely supplant Alex Wennberg on the center depth chart. I believe Kartye with his playoff performance has proven he can handle a full-time NHL role next year, so I gave him one here. Looking ahead, there are several forward contracts expiring after next season, so the Kraken are well positioned to bring in a star forward at that time, be it through free agency or trade. Even if said blockbuster move doesn't occur this offseason, this is something worth keeping an eye on.

Defensemen: Seattle's defensive corps was solid, though could stand to improve. That in and of itself is a bit surprising considering their defensive selections in the expansion draft were lauded at the time. Vince Dunn and Will Borgen are coming off of breakout seasons and solidified themselves as part of the core, and each is rewarded accordingly. Cale Fleury was mostly a 7th defenseman this past season but played well when called upon, so he and Jaycob Megna stick around as key depth. Carson Soucy is the only pending UFA of note here, and I think he walks. He was solid this year, but not up to the standard he set in the expansion season, and had a bad habit of taking untimely penalties every so often that proved costly. To fill his spot, the Kraken do have a promising prospect in Ryker Evans waiting in the wings. However, adding a veteran stopgap who can provide some reliable defense would be good so as to not put so much pressure on Evans and give him time to ease into a full-time NHL role. There are a few options available via free agency or trade to fill this role, one of which I have explored here.

Goaltending: Philipp Grubauer rebounded in the second half of this season and into the playoffs. His play was a key reason as to why the Kraken beat the Avalanche in the first round and pushed the Stars to 7 games in the second. I believe he's earned the longer leash to once again be the number one starter in net for Seattle next year. The options behind him are a bit more iffy though. Martin Jones is a UFA and tailed off hard in the second half of the season, so I doubt he returns. Joey Daccord has been a stalwart in the AHL with the Coachella Valley Firebirds and acquitted himself well in limited NHL action, but is also a pending UFA. He is a candidate to return and challenge for the backup goalie role, but is still a bit unproven. Chris Driedger is recently recovered from injury and is thus a complete question mark. Finally, Czech signee Ales Stezka put up good numbers in Europe but is untested at this level. I think the Kraken could stand to add a veteran goalie who is a safer bet than any of these options to form a genuine tandem with Grubauer, which will go a long way towards stabilizing Seattle's goalie situation and helping them win even more.

As always, constructive feedback is appreciated. Cheers! Go Kraken and Go Firebirds!
Free Agent Signings
RFAYEARSCAP HIT
8$6,750,000
3$2,750,000
2$1,750,000
2$900,000
2$850,000
Trades
1.
SEA
  1. Vladar, Daniel
Additional Details:
Seattle shores up their backup goalie spot behind Grubauer with a safer option than what they currently have. Calgary meanwhile gets under the salary cap for next season while adding a draft pick to do with as they see fit and open up a spot in the goalie rotation for Dustin Wolf.
CGY
  1. 2024 3rd round pick (TOR)
Additional Details:
Conditional; Calgary will receive the lower of Seattle's two 2024 3rd round picks.
2.
SEA
  1. Forbort, Derek
Additional Details:
The idea here is that Seattle takes advantage of Boston's severe cap crunch to get a defensively sound LD who can help with the penalty kill and shore up team defense for a year. Forbort is a good veteran stopgap who will hold down the fort until Ryker Evans is ready for a full-time role in the NHL. Boston on the other hand gains badly needed cap relief to help field a complete roster for next season.
BOS
    Future Considerations
    3.
    SEA
    1. 2024 2nd round pick (PHI)
    CAR
    1. Sprong, Daniel [RFA Rights]
    Additional Details:
    Sprong is a good depth scorer under RFA control, but may land elsewhere for a deserved payday and larger role. This doesn't have to be Carolina, but they may fit as a team looking for more goalscoring. Really though, this could be any team looking for a quality depth scorer.
    Buried
    DraftRound 1Round 2Round 3Round 4Round 5Round 6Round 7
    2023
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the TOR
    Logo of the WPG
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the WSH
    Logo of the SEA
    2024
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the PHI
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the CGY
    2025
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the SEA
    Logo of the SEA
    ROSTER SIZESALARY CAPCAP HITOVERAGES TooltipBONUSESCAP SPACE
    23$83,500,000$82,215,743$129,910$1,907,500$1,284,257
    Left WingCentreRight Wing
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $5,000,000$5,000,000
    LW, C
    M-NTC
    UFA - 4
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $897,500$897,500 (Performance Bonus$1,850,000$2M)
    C
    RFA - 1
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $5,500,000$5,500,000
    RW
    M-NTC
    UFA - 1
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $5,500,000$5,500,000
    LW
    NMC
    UFA - 3
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $4,500,000$4,500,000
    C
    M-NTC
    UFA - 1
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $5,500,000$5,500,000
    RW, LW
    M-NTC
    UFA - 4
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $1,450,000$1,450,000
    LW, RW
    RFA - 1
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $5,166,666$5,166,666
    C, LW, RW
    M-NTC
    UFA - 2
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $5,400,000$5,400,000
    RW, LW
    M-NTC
    UFA - 3
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $859,167$859,167 (Performance Bonus$57,500$58K)
    LW
    RFA - 2
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $1,750,000$1,750,000
    RW, C
    RFA - 2
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $3,500,000$3,500,000
    LW, RW
    M-NTC
    UFA - 2
    Left DefenseRight DefenseGoaltender
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $6,750,000$6,750,000
    LD/RD
    UFA - 4
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $4,000,000$4,000,000
    RD
    M-NTC
    UFA - 2
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $5,900,000$5,900,000
    G
    NTC
    UFA - 4
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $4,600,000$4,600,000
    LD/RD
    NTC
    UFA - 3
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $2,750,000$2,750,000
    RD
    UFA - 2
    Logo of the Calgary Flames
    $2,200,000$2,200,000
    G
    UFA - 2
    Logo of the Boston Bruins
    $3,000,000$3,000,000
    LD
    M-NTC
    UFA - 1
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $3,000,000$3,000,000
    RD
    M-NTC
    UFA - 1
    ScratchesInjured Reserve (IR)Long Term IR (LTIR)
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $900,000$900,000
    RD
    RFA - 2
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $762,500$762,500
    LD
    UFA - 1
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $850,000$850,000
    RW
    RFA - 1
    Taxi Squad
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $918,333$918,333 ($0$0$0$0) (Performance Bonus$3,062,500$3M)
    C
    RFA - 3
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $897,500$897,500 ($0$0$0$0)
    LD
    RFA - 2
    Logo of the Seattle Kraken
    $870,000$870,000 ($0$0$0$0) (Performance Bonus$80,000$80K)
    G
    UFA - 1

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    May 30 at 11:49 a.m.
    #1
    CupChaser
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    Boston accepts.

    Great ACGM!
    KrakenTheCode liked this.
    May 30 at 11:52 a.m.
    #2
    See you space cowboy
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    This is really well done. I think each team benefits from the moves.

    And for the record, love the title of the ACGM, and your username is great too.
    KrakenTheCode liked this.
    May 30 at 11:54 a.m.
    #3
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    Edited May 30 at 12:00 p.m.
    Well done. My only rebuttal may be that Dunn may get paid in the 7’s. I realize that under this model you are assuming that Wright plays the year in the AHL, but I think he very well could crack the line up in a 3C role. Either way, for insurance, I’d still hang onto Wennberg because his money will soon go to Beniers and can’t be tied up past this year anyways. Also, what’s the deal with Dreidger? Likely done in the league? I haven’t heard his name in quite a while.
    KrakenTheCode liked this.
    May 30 at 12:02 p.m.
    #4
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    Flames pass, some team tight to the cap will pay a bit better for Vladar
    May 30 at 12:16 p.m.
    #5
    Lets Get Kraken
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    Just a couple of criticisms from me. You are overpaying for Vladar, no matter what Flames fans are saying. He is a career sub .900 goalie who shouldn’t fetch more than a 5th. The move for Forbort is definitely a good one. As for Sprong, I hope he ends up on the Canes, but a 2nd that is a borderline first is a bit much, don’t you think. Not terrible though.
    KrakenTheCode liked this.
    May 30 at 12:31 p.m.
    #6
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    Quoting: evelutions2
    Just a couple of criticisms from me. You are overpaying for Vladar, no matter what Flames fans are saying. He is a career sub .900 goalie who shouldn’t fetch more than a 5th. The move for Forbort is definitely a good one. As for Sprong, I hope he ends up on the Canes, but a 2nd that is a borderline first is a bit much, don’t you think. Not terrible though.


    Finally another take on Vladar based in realism. I have been adamant that he is worth no more than a 4th, but Flames fans, because they spent a 3rd to acquire him, refuse to accept anything less than what they spent. As if it is the job of other GM’s to right their GM’s miscalculations. Not to mention how obvious it is that Calgary wants to move him. Leverage exists. With that being said, based only on SEA’s stockpile of picks, I assume I could see them forking over a third for a younger backup. It wouldn’t be the end of the world.
    KrakenTheCode liked this.
    May 30 at 12:32 p.m.
    #7
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    Quoting: JuanDamienNebraska
    Well done. My only rebuttal may be that Dunn may get paid in the 7’s. I realize that under this model you are assuming that Wright plays the year in the AHL, but I think he very well could crack the line up in a 3C role. Either way, for insurance, I’d still hang onto Wennberg because his money will soon go to Beniers and can’t be tied up past this year anyways. Also, what’s the deal with Dreidger? Likely done in the league? I haven’t heard his name in quite a while.


    Driedger tore his ACL playing for Team Canada last summer. By the time he was ready to return in mid-February, the Kraken were in the middle of a playoff race, so they sent him down to the AHL to get back into game shape. Since then he's played for the Firebirds, backing up Joey Daccord and posting a .908 Sv% and 2.61 GAA in 14 games. Driedger could force his way into the backup goalie picture for Seattle next year, but he's just a bit of an unknown right now.
    JuanDamienNebraska liked this.
    May 30 at 12:34 p.m.
    #8
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    Quoting: evelutions2
    Just a couple of criticisms from me. You are overpaying for Vladar, no matter what Flames fans are saying. He is a career sub .900 goalie who shouldn’t fetch more than a 5th. The move for Forbort is definitely a good one. As for Sprong, I hope he ends up on the Canes, but a 2nd that is a borderline first is a bit much, don’t you think. Not terrible though.


    Quoting: JuanDamienNebraska
    Finally another take on Vladar based in realism. I have been adamant that he is worth no more than a 4th, but Flames fans, because they spent a 3rd to acquire him, refuse to accept anything less than what they spent. As if it is the job of other GM’s to right their GM’s miscalculations. Not to mention how obvious it is that Calgary wants to move him. Leverage exists. With that being said, based only on SEA’s stockpile of picks, I assume I could see them forking over a third for a younger backup. It wouldn’t be the end of the world.


    Appreciate the feedback!
    May 30 at 3:23 p.m.
    #9
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    I don't know that Boston just give Forbort away. I think there would be some interest from teams to add him for all the reasons you listed. I'd imagine he could land a late pick 5th-6th round, 4th if you get a team that really wants him.
     
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