The Minnesota Wild will get some reinforcements into the lineup for tonight’s Game 6 against the Blackhawks, as goalie Darcy Kuemper will dress and back up Ilya Bryzgalov for the first time this series.
Kuemper, who started five games in the opening round against Colorado, suffered an upper-body injury in Game 7 against the Avs and has been held out of action ever since. Journeyman John Curry has dressed as Bryzgalov’s backup through the first five games of the Chicago series, but has yet to see any action.
Kuemper, 24, had played very well prior to getting hurt, going 3-1-1 with a 2.03 GAA and .913 save percentage, recording one shutout.
As for the Wild, tonight’s game will mark the third time this postseason they’ve faced elimination… and the first with Bryzgalov starting. In Game 6 of the opening round, Kuemper stopped 21 of 23 shots for the win, then made 17 saves on 21 shots in Game 7 before Bryzgalov came in and finished things off.