Kraken name Dave Hakstol as team’s first head coach

The expansion Seattle Kraken named Dave Hakstol as the franchise’s first head coach on Thursday.

Hakstol, 52, compiled a 134-101-42 record in four seasons as head coach of the Philadelphia Flyers (2015-19), losing in the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs in 2015-16 and 2017-18.



He was fired on Dec. 17, 2018, 31 games into the 2018-19 season, and spent the past two seasons as an assistant coach with the Toronto Maple Leafs.

“It is an honor to be the first head coach of the Seattle Kraken,” Hakstol said. “I am honored to be joining this tremendous group of staff and fans. When I first saw the arena, I was blown away — it is such a unique venue. I am looking forward to being a part of the group that builds a team that plays with pride, passion and selflessness for the city of Seattle.”

Dave Hakstol
Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

The Kraken enter the NHL as the league’s 32nd team in 2021-22. The NHL Expansion Draft is scheduled for July 21 and Seattle also has the No. 2 pick in the 2021 NHL Draft on July 23.

“I am incredibly proud to announce Dave Hakstol as the first head coach of the Seattle Kraken franchise,” general manager Ron Francis said. “Dave possesses great experience, a strong work ethic, a solid technical understanding of the game, and the remarkable ability to communicate clearly and effectively. I look forward to working with Dave as we strive to build a team our fans will be proud of.”

Hakstol, an Alberta native, spent 11 seasons as the coach at the University of North Dakota before joining the Flyers. He posted a 289-143-43 record and reached the NCAA Frozen Four seven times.



–Field Level Media (@FieldLevelMedia)