Kuemper learned he was traded… in the shower

Kuemper learned he was traded… in the shower
Kuemper learned he was traded… in the shower

Learning that you have been traded to the National Hockey League (NHL) is always surprising news; imagine learning it while you’re in the shower.

That’s exactly what goaltender Darcy Kuemper experienced on Wednesday, when the Washington Capitals traded him to the Los Angeles Kings for forward Pierre-Luc Dubois. It was even his wife who told him the news.

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“I think we were traded,” she told him when she went into the bathroom, Kuemper said Friday by videoconference.

Obviously, the 34-year-old veteran did not expect it, he who was under contract in Washington for three more seasons. Let’s just say his time under the shower head was certainly cut short.

With this moment of incomprehension behind him, Kuemper was able to remember his short time with the Kings in the 2017-2018 season. Assistant to Jonathan Quick, he had an excellent record of 10-1-3, an efficiency percentage of .932 and a goals against average of 2.10 before being traded in February to the Arizona Coyotes.

“It was difficult that it was so short because I really enjoyed the organization and life there, as well as my teammates. I’m excited to go back. […] I look forward to working with them and helping them get victories,” explained the Saskatchewan native.

This new start could help Kuemper regain his place among the NHL’s elite. He brilliantly guarded the goals for the Colorado Avalanche to help them win the Stanley Cup in 2021-2022, but his time with the Capitals was disappointing.

In the playoffs, he lost his net to Charlie Lindgren.

“It’s frustrating because we weren’t winning as many games and I wasn’t playing as much. I want to prove that last year was an exception. I believe I can be a stabilizing force in front of the net and be the goalkeeper this team needs,” he assured.

Since Cam Talbot will not be back with the Kings next season as general manager Rob Blake confirmed on Wednesday, Kuemper should pair with David Rittich.

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