The NHL is adding another franchise starting in the 2021-22 season. The Seattle Kraken will then take the ice as the league’s 32 squad.
Thursday, Seattle made its first huge move and announced that Dave Hakstol will be the team’s first head coach.
Hakstol is probably best known for his three-plus seasons as head coach of the Philadelphia Flyers, going 134-101-42 overall before being let go 31 games into his fourth season as coach.
The 52-year-old was most recently with the Toronto Maple Leafs as an assistant coach under Coach Sheldon Keefe.
Back in 2015 when he was hired by the Flyers, Hakstol became the first coach in 33 years to make the jump from assistant to a head coaching spot in the NHL.
Reports say Seattle used up a lot of resources looking for the franchise’s first head coach, talking to the likes of Rick Tocchet and Gerard Gallant, but in the end deciding that Hakstol was the best option.
The Kraken will conduct their expansion draft on July 21st before kicking off their inaugural season in the fall.
The franchise will follow the same rules that the Vegas Golden Knights used when they joined the league in 2017.