Golden Knights to host Kraken in Seattle’s first NHL game

The Vegas home opener is set for Oct. 12.

The National Hockey League announced Wednesday night that the Seattle Kraken will kick off their inaugural season on the road against the Vegas Golden Knights.

The Knights’ home opener, set for Oct. 12, will be the first NHL game for the league’s newest franchise. Seattle’s first home game will be Oct. 23 against the Vancouver Canucks.

Four years ago, the Golden Knights opened their inaugural campaign on the road as well. The Knights played back-to-back road contests against the Stars and Coyotes before coming home for the unforgettable Oct. 10 home-opener win against Arizona. Vegas went 3-0-0 in its first three games.

The NHL is expected to release the full 2021-22 schedule tomorrow.

The announcement came during the 2021 NHL Expansion Draft as Seattle announced its official selections.

A few notable names on the 32nd franchise’s newly-built roster include Yanni Gourde from Tampa Bay, Jordan Eberle from the Islanders and Mark Giordano from Calgary.

The other players taken from Pacific Division clubs were Haydn Fleury (Anaheim), Adam Larsson (Edmonton), Kurtis MacDermid (Los Angeles), Alexander True (San Jose) and Kole Lind (Vancouver). Arizona is set to join the Central Division starting next season.

Unlike in 2017, Kraken general manager Ron Francis was unable to leverage his situation to make big moves like George McPhee did for the Golden Knights with teams like Anaheim, Florida and Minnesota. However, Seattle passed on many big names, presumably in order to preserve cap space. In fact, the Kraken only drafted three players with existing cap hits above $4 million (Giordano, Gourde, Eberle).

According to CapFriendly, the Kraken have a projected $28.9 million in cap space after the team announced the signings of goaltender Chris Driedger and defensemen Jamie Oleksiak and Adam Larsson, the expansion draft selections from Florida, Dallas and Edmonton, respectively.

Life around the NHL should be busy in the next few days and weeks, especially once the trade freeze is lifted tomorrow morning (10 a.m.).

All 30 Kraken selections are listed below, as are the results from the Golden Knights’ draft back in 2017.

Seattle Kraken expansion draft results

Anaheim — Haydn Fleury, D
Arizona — Tyler Pitlick, F
Boston — Jeremy Lauzon, D
Buffalo — William Borgen, D
Calgary — Mark Giordano, D
Carolina — Morgan Geekie, F
Chicago — John Quenneville, F
Colorado — Joonas Donskoi, F
Columbus — Gavin Bayreuther, D
Dallas — Jamie Oleksiak, D
Detroit — Dennis Cholowski, D
Edmonton — Adam Larsson, D
Florida — Chris Driedger, G
Minnesota — Carson Soucy, D
Montreal — Cale Fleury, D
Nashville — Calle Jarnkrok, F
New Jersey — Nathan Bastian, F
New York Islanders — Jordan Eberle, F
New York Rangers — Colin Blackwell, F
Ottawa — Joey Daccord, G
Philadelphia — Carsen Twarynski, F
Pittsburgh — Brandon Tanev, F
San Jose — Alexander True, F
St. Louis — Vince Dunn, D
Tampa Bay — Yanni Gourde, F
Toronto — Jared McCann, F
Vancouver — Kole Lind, F
Washington — Vitek Vanecek, G
Winnipeg — Mason Appleton, F

Vegas’ expansion draft selections

ANADClayton StonerDETFTomas NosekOTTDMarc Methot
ARIFTeemu PulkkinenEDMDGriffin ReinhartPHIFPierre-E Bellemare
BOSDColin MillerFLAFJ. MarchessaultPITGMarc-Andre Fleury
BUFFWilliam CarrierLAKDBrayden McNabbSJSDDavid Schlemko
CGYDDeryk EngellandMINFErik HaulaSTLFDavid Perron
CARFConnor BrickleyMTLDAlexei EmelinTBLDJason Garrison
CHIDT. van RiemsdykNSHFJames NealTORFBrendan Leipsic
COLGCalvin PickardNJDDJon MerrillVANDLuca Sbisa
CBJFWilliam KarlssonNYIGJ-F BerubeWSHDNate Schmidt
DALFCody EakinNYRFOscar LindbergWPGFChris Thorburn

In addition to draft picks — including two first-round picks and four second-round picks — Vegas acquired Shea Theodore, Reilly Smith, Alex Tuch, Nikita Gusev and Jake Bischoff along with the contracts of David Clarkson and Mikhail Grabovski via trade.