Darcy Kuemper on the move to Washington
Darcy Kuemper will be in a new net this fall! The Stanley Cup winner has signed with the Washington Capitals, on a five-year, $26.25 million deal. The Caps turned heads by letting go of both Vitek Vanecek and Ilya Samsonov, and Kuemper is now the new face of the Washington net mouth. There’s a lot more to be done in DC but sorting out goaltending is a good start.
Good For Both Player And Team
Obviously, the Colorado Avalanche were not ready to pay Kuemper what he wanted after winning the Stanley Cup. Instead, they went the route of trading for Rangers goalie Alexander Georgiev and inking him to a three-year deal. However, Kuemper more than deserved a payday after establishing himself as a great goalie and Cup winner. Furthermore, Washington seems like a good place for him to continue on as they look to give Alex Ovechkin as much help as possible. It is clear that the Caps and Avalanche are on two different levels, but Kuemper could be a boost in net that Washington has struggled to find since losing Braden Holtby a few years ago. $5.25 million per season is also a very fair number considering both the player and team sides of it.
Are The Caps Back On The Upswing?
Washington still has a lot of questions that need answering this offseason. Nicklas Backstrom’s NHL future is up in the air as of right now. Depth on both offense and defense are priorities, along with making sure Ovi has quality linemates. Evgeny Kuznetsov should do for the upcoming season, but there could be a big hole down the middle if Backstrom ultimately has to retire. Justin Schultz is also out the door after signing a two-year deal in Seattle. If Backstrom goes on LTIR the financial side of it could be made easier. However, either relying on young talent or looking in a free agent pool that’s rapidly shrinking is not easy. They still have the talent to make the playoffs, and Kuemper could help them finally get past the first round for the first time since winning it all in 2018. Like many other teams, you should keep an eye on Washington this summer.
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