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Kraken announce exhibition games, won’t play in Seattle until regular season


SEATTLE, WASHINGTON - DECEMBER 10: A general view of signage at Climate Pledge Arena on December 10, 2020 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)

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The Seattle Kraken still aim to have “Climate Pledge Arena” ready for mid-October NHL regular season games, but their exhibition schedule will involve a “3-Rink Rush” of other arenas in the Washington area.

In addition to three road exhibition games, the Seattle Kraken announced the following “home” preseason games in Washington cities Spokane, Everett, and Kent:

  • Sept. 26: vs. Canucks at Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena (Spokane).
  • Oct. 1: vs. Oilers at Angel of the Winds Arena (Everett).
  • Oct. 2: vs. Flames at Accesso Showcase Center (Kent).

(The Kraken will also face the Canucks, Flames, and Oilers in road preseason contests.)

Kraken claim Climate Pledge Arena is ‘on track’ for regular season

In the Kraken’s announcement, Kraken CEO Tod Leiweke said that renovations are “on track” for Seattle’s Climate Pledge Arena to be ready by mid-October.

“The arena is on track to open mid-October for our inaugural regular season game,” Leiweke said. “But we have made the decision to play our three inaugural preseason games at three outstanding local arenas ... We couldn’t be more excited for these games and then to open Climate Pledge Arena.”

(Back in July 2020, Amazon and the NHL teamed up to explain how they want Climate Pledge Arena to work.)

The Kraken’s statement indicates that COVID disrupted renovations for Climate Pledge Arena. Again, Leiweke stated that things are “on track” for the Kraken to begin their regular season in Seattle, but we’ll see if there are any setbacks along the way.

Maybe the Kraken will begin their inaugural season on the road?

In the case of the Golden Knights, they played their first two games on the road (both wins) before beating the Coyotes in their emotional home debut on Oct. 10, 2017.

The Kraken noted that the full NHL schedule is expected to be announced “soon.”

Speaking of coming soon: the Seattle Kraken’s expansion draft is scheduled for July 21. Yes, PHT will have more on that as that momentous occasion approaches. In case you missed it, the Kraken hired Dave Hakstol as their first head coach, and will select second overall in the 2021 NHL Draft.

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.