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Darcy Kuemper practicing Avalanche

DARCY KUEMPER BACK PRACTICING WITH AVALANCHE

MAY 12, 2022  (14H48)      COLTON PANKIW
After a scary incident in Game 3 in which he took a stick from Ryan Johansen to the face, Colorado Avalanche netminder Darcy Kuemper was back practicing with his team on Thursday morning.

Kuemper, 32, had many worried for him after Johansen's stick blade went through his mask and appeared to make contact with his eye. The Avs netminder was in considerable pain and was helped off the ice by trainers. Luckily, no major damage aside from some swelling around his eye occurred. It is extremely unfortunate given how much worse the outcome could have been.

Before leaving Game 3, Kuemper was playing phenomenally to start the first-round series versus the Nashville Predators, recording a 1.63 goals against average along with a .934 save percentage. Thankfully for this Avalanche team, Pavel Francouz was able to step up and lead them to victories in Game 3 and 4, as they made quick work of the Preds who they swept with relative ease. While the second-round won't come as easy against the winner of the St. Louis Blues and Minnesota Wild series, this Avalanche team will still be favored given the overload of talent on their roster. Having Kuemper back healthy will only help increase those odds.