MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Darcy Keumper is used to this roller coaster ride. It’s the advantage to starting the season in obscurity, then playing your way to the NHL.
“I think it’s probably even more important in the playoffs to keep a level head and kind of shuffle out the outside noise. Don’t worry about that too much,” Keumper said.
What this season did for him was inject confidence in him and his teammates, according to defensemen Ryan Suter.
“He looks good, he looks confident back there, looks like he’s seeing the puck well,” Suter said. “We just have to, you know, continue to box out guys and allow him to see the puck.”
The game plan from Colorado in game one was to shoot high on Ilya Bryzgalov, and it worked. They can’t do that as much with Keumper because he’s six foot five inches tall. Also, Colorado hasn’t seen Keumper quite enough to really have a book on him
That’s part of how they’ll try to strike lightning again with him, by making the other team re-think its strategy. Colorado’s Gabriel Landeskog praised Keumper’s playoff performance so far.
“He certainly controls everything and I think he made some nice glove saves, and even in game two when he came in,” Landeskog said. “But certainly … game three we didn’t put enough bodies in front of him. We didn’t test him enough.”
He’s overcome a slump and injuries to get back to the spot light, where – with the help of goalie coach Bob Mason – he hopes to thrive again.
“It was unfortunate getting injured there, but it gave me some time to, you know, sharpen up some things with [Mason] and get back where I wanted to be,” Keumper said.