Washington Capitals starting goaltender, Darcy Kuemper, missed the team’s Home Opener on Friday but not due to injury or illness. Kuemper and his wife Sydney welcomed a baby boy the night prior, the couple’s first child.
The 33-year-old goaltender was back on the ice at practice on Sunday as he prepared to retake his cage against the Calgary Flames. Kuemper spoke with the media in the locker room afterward about becoming a father for the first time.
"Everything went amazing and everyone's feeling great so, I mean, it's been unbelievable."
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) October 15, 2023
Kuemper’s absence seemed to catch the Capitals by surprise as they had to tweak their roster and demote forward Aliaksei Protas in order to bring up Clay Stevenson to back up Charlie Lindgren. Protas appeared scheduled to play within the team’s bottom-six forward group against Pittsburgh before the demotion.
Turns out the Kuemper family was not expecting their son’s arrival quite so soon.
“Obviously, it’s amazing, the best day of your life,” Kuemper said. “We went for what we thought was a routine checkup and then an hour later we were headed to the hospital. It kinda snuck up on us. I’m sure the day sneaks up on everyone as much as you prepare for it. When it’s time to go, it’s time to go. We were in great hands. Everything went amazing and everyone is feeling great so it’s been unbelievable.”
Kuemper also spoke about the learning process that he and his wife are currently going through.
“Going home is a special day,” Kuemper said. “They don’t give you a user manual so you’re kind of on your own. It’s been a lot of fun so far just kind of figuring it all out on the fly. My wife’s parents are in town right now so they’re helping us. It’s nice to have them around.”
The Capitals will need to utilize Kuemper’s newly-found dad strength quickly after getting shut out 4-0 by the Penguins in their Home Opener, Friday.
Screenshot via @Capitals/X
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