SEATTLE – Their trek to Section 102 at Xcel Energy Center started with a trip to the restroom.
Then they each snagged a hot dog and a Sprite to share before finally settling into their seats facing the Wild's bench.
"OK, sit here and I'll be back," their dad said.
Kendall Tyson and Kyle Boyd grew up in the State of Hockey where their father, Joel Boyd, has been the Wild's orthopedic surgeon since the team's inception in 2000. He is the first Black team doctor in NHL history and set his children on a course to further diversity in the sport of hockey.
Now, the siblings from Eden Prairie are sharing the sport with a new audience in Seattle, working with the Kraken during its debut season that includes its first meeting with the Wild on Thursday at Climate Pledge Arena.
"Everyone's feeling like they have to get into hockey," Boyd said, "and now it's the time."
Long before they joined the Kraken, Tyson and Boyd had already been promoting hockey.
Boyd was on the varsity team at Blake for two years before playing club hockey at Dartmouth, where he studied history. He later went on to coach while teaching.
As for Tyson, she was a basketball player but competed with a club hockey team while earning her MBA at Yale that taught the basics of the sport, such as how to skate. More than 200 students participated.
"That was actually my first time introducing people who didn't know anything about the game to the game of hockey," Tyson said.
They eventually teamed up with Seattle after Tod Leiweke, the former Wild president and current president and CEO of the Kraken, spotted Boyd at a public skating session in nearby Renton, Wash.
Leiweke asked where Boyd was from after noticing how smooth a skater he was, and the two began chatting about their ties to the Wild.After asking Boyd's input on how to get more people interested in hockey, Leiweke passed along his business card and the two met up — along with Tyson, who had been working for Topgolf.
"One thing kind of led to another from there," Boyd said.
Tyson went on to become the organization's vice president of strategy and business intelligence, a role in which she collects and analyzes data to tailor the fan experience with the team and at Climate Pledge Arena. Boyd is the director of fan development.
Not only does he work to foster connections with youth through schools and community centers, but Boyd is also striving to make Kraken hockey more accessible for families. Some tickets, for example, are available for $20.
"It shows that we're just not interested in supporting our team at the highest level," Boyd said, "but supporting those youth that one day dream of playing for the Kraken."
While many fans were already cheering for the Western Hockey League teams in the area, like the Everett Silvertips and Seattle Thunderbirds, the arrival of the NHL has generated a different buzz, Boyd said.
And it's appealing to newcomers to the sport.
"We've created an atmosphere where fans feel that they can learn and there isn't necessarily a feeling of you have to know this or be an expert here," said Boyd, who's also focused on developing a diverse and inclusive hockey community in Seattle.
"We've programmed a lot of what is happening in the arena to make it fan-friendly and fan-facing to make them feel like we can learn a little bit about the power play and learn a little bit about a penalty kill and get excited and understand some of those nuances to the game that go beyond your 5-on-5 action."
What motivates Tyson is giving people in the Pacific Northwest the chance to have the same experiences she had as a kid.
She and Boyd and their younger brother Kasey were at the Wild's inaugural home game on Oct. 11, 2000, when Darby Hendrickson scored the team's first goal in a 3-3 tie against Philadelphia.
"We were high-fiving," Tyson recalled. "People were running up and down the rows and hugging. It was a sign that NHL hockey was back in Minnesota and was here to stay. I think that moment kind of solidified for me my passion and love for the game."
Another memory was created just last Saturday when Tyson was at the Kraken's home opener with her brothers and parents, a get-together that felt surreal.
After tagging along with their dad all those years ago, their individual journeys brought them back to the same destination.
"Three of us had on credentials," Tyson said. "When did this become the family business? One's a doctor. One's a teacher. I was an engineer by trade. This was definitely not in the vision. But I think looking back on it, I kind of go back to, 'Why not us?' It also makes sense in some ways as much as it doesn't make sense the path we got to be here.
"Being here makes so much sense."