The Seattle Kraken have lost their starting goaltender, as Philipp Grubauer was placed on injured reserve today. Grubauer was injured in last Friday’s game against the Colorado Avalanche, leaving Martin Jones to start (and lose) on Sunday. The team recalled Joey Daccord to give them another goaltender, and that’s the tandem the team will have to go with for the time being.
Grubauer, 30, was arguably the worst goaltender in the league last season, posting an .889 save percentage in 55 appearances. That was a stark difference from his career totals, which to that point had him sitting near the best save percentages of all-time with a .920 and a Vezina Trophy finalist the year prior.
Unfortunately, it didn’t seem like an aberration when this season began. Grubauer was shelled for five goals on 27 shots in his first game, and another five on 34 shots in his second start. Even the two goals on 19 shots before leaving the Colorado game had him as a sub .900 netminder, something the team certainly wasn’t expecting when they signed him to a six-year, $35.4MM contract in the summer of 2021.
Even worse, he still may have been their best option. Jones, 33, hasn’t posted a save percentage over .900 since 2017-18, and is now sitting at .860 for this season. There’s no way that the Kraken can stay competitive with that kind of goaltending, meaning either Daccord is going to need to take over, Grubauer is going to need to get healthy and back to form, or the team is going to have to make a change.
Chris Driedger, the team’s other goaltender who was meant to form an impressive tandem with Grubauer, tore his ACL while playing at the World Championship earlier this year. He is expected to be out through January at least, with the recovery period likely being even longer than that. After spending even more money in the offseason, with veteran additions like Oliver Bjorkstrand and Andre Burakovsky, the Kraken are clearly trying to contend in the Pacific Division.
At this point, it’s hard to imagine that given the goaltending they have received so far – especially now that Grubauer is on the shelf.
Worst signing in Seattle’s history
Eventually they will have to buy him out & shift him off to a team like Toronto with massive sweeteners attached.
Yeah, I was thinking the same thing: if he kept on going this way, he’d be a fine candidate for a summer 2023 buyout.
Then again, this is the same management that thought, after four straight seasons of terrible play, that MARTIN F’N JONES was the answer to much of anything at all.
It sucks how he just completely fell off after signing there. Way too much random voodoo with goalies.
Goalies are like relief pitchers. There are like two or three who are truly elite and among the best in the league every year for a decade. Then there are like 15 guys in the next tier who could, in any given year, win the Vezina or have an .850 save percentage.
Another goalie ruined by Hak.
Both Driedger (Florida) and Grubauer were solid in need for several years prior to joining the Kraken. At the time, it seemed like the team had signed two very good goalies. I am coming to the conclusion that the style defense that the Kraken play is simply a detriment and does nothing to help the goalies out. Even Joey Daccord has been awful, and Id have to believe that a great goalie like Shesterkin would see his stats go downhill. I think a lot has to do with the coaching and being a season ticket holder, I’m starting to wonder if it’s time due a coaching change…