Seattle Kraken Head Coach Dave Hakstol on Building a Tradition

Despite a tough inaugural season, Hakstol and the Kraken appear to be in good shape to build off their first year.

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For episode #178, we revisit one of our favourite conversations from last year’s College Hockey Inc. Virtual Coaching Clinic. Seattle Kraken Head Coach Dave Hakstol sat down with us in advance of their inaugural training camp to discuss what goes into building a franchise/team from scratch and his coaching journey up to that point.

Despite not living up to the lofty heights of the Vegas Golden Knights incredible expansion season, Hakstol and the Kraken appear to be in good shape to build off their first year with plenty of cap space and a surplus of draft picks.

Hakstol got his coaching career started in 1996 with the USHL’s Sioux City Musketeers, a role he held for four seasons before returning to his alma mater, the University of North Dakota. He was named Head Coach in 2004, leading the team to the NCAA Frozen Four on seven occasions and was also honoured with the conference Coach of the Year Awards in 2009 and 2015.

Hakstol made the jump to the NHL in 2015 with the Philadelphia Flyers, becoming the first head coach since 1982 to go directly from the NCAA to the NHL. After four seasons, he joined Toronto for two seasons as an assistant.

Hear about the whirlwind summer leading up to the Hakstol’s first season with the Kraken, tips on how to support your players during the off-season, and how his climb up the coaching ladder helped shape him as a person.

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Aaron Wilbur

I’m a husband, father, sports nut and Founder of The Coaches Site. I enjoy cooking, watching live music and hiking the North Shore mountains with my family. My son is a football player, which has turned me into a big football fan. It’s helped me appreciate what hockey parents go through, especially those who have little experience with the sport, when trying to navigate their child up the hockey ladder.

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