NHL Insider Jon Morosi details what he’s seeing from Seattle Kraken’s Tanev, Gourde

Oct 29, 2021, 2:46 PM
Seattle Kraken Brandon Tanev...
Brandon Tanev #13 of the Seattle Kraken skates with the puck against the Vancouver Canucks during the second period in the Kraken's inaugural home opener at Climate Pledge Arena. (Steph Chambers/Getty Images)
(Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

For the first time in franchise history, the Seattle Kraken have a winning streak after beating the Montreal Canadiens 5-1 on Tuesday and the Minnesota Wild 4-1 on Thursday.

Fleury, Grubauer keep Seattle Kraken rolling in 4-1 win over Wild

NHL Network insider Jon Morosi joined 710 ESPN Seattle’s Wyman and Bob on Thursday prior to the Kraken’s most recent win to share his thoughts on the team’s play. Two players in particular, Morosi said, have really stood out to him.

“What I think was most important about Tuesday’s win, yes, we saw Tanev get two more goals and his legend continues to build in Seattle as the fan favorite,” he said.

Tanev is, of course, Brandon Tanev, the winger who, through eight games, leads the Seattle Kraken with six goals. That is a surprise to some as Tanev’s career-high in goals is seven.

Tanev netted two goals in Seattle’s win over Montreal on Tuesday before scoring an empty netter on Thursday to effectively clinch the Kraken’s win over the Wild.

The man commonly referred to as “Turbo” has formed an almost immediate connection with Seattle fans for his play, which is fast, hard-hitting and aggressive with the puck, resulting in his team-high six goals.

Plus, there’s his incredible headshot.

“Tanev has that grit and the goal scoring we’re seeing right now,” Morosi said. “He’s been a revelation for the Kraken.”

The other play who Morosi feels was critical to the Kraken’s win over the Canadiens on Tuesday is center Yanni Gourde, who missed the first four games of the season due to offseason shoulder surgery. Gourde scored his first goal as a member of the Kraken on Tuesday.

Gourde leads Seattle’s first line as the center and Morosi stressed just how important it is for a team to have a player of Gourde’s caliber at center.

“I remember I was talking to a scouting director of an NHL team after the draft and his remark to me when we were talking about the way the first round (of the draft) played out and he said, ‘It is hard to find a center. It is really hard to find a true center,'” Morosi recalled. “Not just because of the goal scoring, which of course we saw Yanni Gourde do in Tuesday’s game, but many hockey people will tell you the most important role of the center is to be that great 200-foot player — to be able to defend both deep in your own zone and then jump up in the play offensively and really have responsibilities all over the ice. Yes you have to take draws as part of your job, but it’s that ability to defend centrally and also be someone who leads the attack.”

The Seattle Kraken have a player who can do just that in Gourde, who came to Seattle in the expansion draft from the Tampa Bay Lightning, who have won the last two Stanley Cup Finals.

“When you have someone like Yanni Gourde who can play that role … you can see it in the way that (head coach) Dave Hakstol was able to run his lines Tuesday night,” Morosi said. “When Yanni Gourde is in the lineup, the rest of the lineup makes sense. That’s what I think a top-line center — a true No. 1 center — does. It allows the rest of your club to make sense.”

Gourde’s presence, Morosi said, allowed the Kraken to play what he thought was their most complete game of the young 2021-2022 season.

“That was a good, full 60-minute game,” he said. “… That was exactly the demonstration you wanted to see from the Kraken.”

Listen to the full discussion with Morosi at this link or in the player below.

Eide: Kraken have pair of measuring-stick games to close out homestand

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NHL Insider Jon Morosi details what he’s seeing from Seattle Kraken’s Tanev, Gourde