Joey Daccord made history for Seattle’s American Hockey League affiliate by recording the first shutout for Coachella Valley on Dec. 2. It took just 16 games for this bit of history to be made for the Firebirds, which debuted this season as Seattle’s top farm team. 

Daccord, 26, turned away 26 shots in the effort. 

The North Andover, Mass., native is the next man up on the Kraken’s goaltender depth chart and has played well as of late. After a slow start to the year, Daccord boasts a .925 save percentage in his last seven games played — his season percentage sits at .915. 

Daccord was third in the AHL last year with a .925 save percentage for Charlotte, which Seattle shared with Florida as its top affiliate in 2021-22. 

One of the looming questions surrounding Daccord is whether or not he’ll bloom into an NHL goalie or remain a more than capable AHL starter. Although Daccord is 26 and hasn’t broken into the NHL full-time, the door isn’t shut for him.

There are several examples of goaltenders, more recently with players like St. Louis’ Jordan Binnington and Seattle’s Chris Driedger, that needed several years of seasoning in the minors before getting a real shot. 

However, currently blocked by Martin Jones and Philipp Grubauer, Daccord needs either an injury or a change of heart on the Kraken’s goaltending tandem to receive his chance — at least this year. 

For now, we’ll track Daccord’s progress in the AHL and see if he puts any pressure on the Kraken front office. 

Shane Wright scores in first game back, World Juniors next

Wright, fresh off a conditioning stint with Coachella Valley, scored in his first game back with the Seattle Kraken, a 4-2 loss to the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday. Scoring a goal against the Canadiens, who famously snubbed Wright by not taking him No. 1 overall in the 2022 NHL Draft, had to have felt great. 

Up next for Wright: The World Junior Championship. Many people expected that step in Wright’s development plan, and the Kraken officially announced Thursday that he’s set to report to Moncton.

We’ll see what lies ahead once Wright returns from international duty, but this is a great call by Seattle. It gives Wright another opportunity to shine on a big stage, and it allows the Kraken to delay their decision on whether to burn the first year of his entry-level contract this season. Remember, they can still theoretically return him to the OHL without using that first contract year, up until he has played nine NHL games. Wright has played eight so far, so the decision will have to come soon after he gets back from the WJC.

Team Canada camp starts now, and the tournament runs Dec. 26 through Jan. 5.

Jagger Firkus, Ty Nelson left off Canada’s WJC roster, but plenty of other local flavor

Unfortunately, Wright will be the only Kraken prospect at the World Juniors for Team Canada.

Kraken prospects Jagger Firkus and Ty Nelson won’t play for Team Canada at the World Junior Championship, which starts Dec. 26 and will be played in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and Moncton, New Brunswick. Both skated with Team Canada’s junior team this summer but weren’t ultimately picked for its selection camp. 

The roster does feature five players and one coach with ties to the Puget Sound area’s two WHL teams: Seattle’s Kevin Korchinski (defenseman, Blackhawks prospect), Nolan Allan (defenseman, Blackhawks), Reid Schaefer (forward, Oilers), and Thomas Milic (goalie); and Everett’s Olen Zellweger (defenseman, Ducks) and Dennis Williams (head coach). 

Team Finland will also be a team to keep an eye on. Scott Wheeler of The Athletic projects Kraken forward prospect Jani Nyman and goalie Niklas Kokko.

We won’t quote what Wheeler said about Kokko because it’s behind a paywall, but if you’re a subscriber we recommend taking a peak. 

Spotlight: David Goyette

David Goyette, the last of the Kraken’s four second-round picks in the 2022 NHL Draft, is fresh off his best statistical game of the season, notching a five-point night that included a pair of goals for the Sudbury Wolves on Sunday.

The 18-year-old center boasts 34 points (17 goals) in 24 games in the Ontario Hockey League this season. 

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