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Avalanche G Darcy Kuemper gets hit in the eye area with a stick allowing Stanley Cup Playoff Game 3 to be won over Predators

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The Colorado Avalanche extended their lead in the first round of the playoff series to 3-0 with a 7-3 win over the Nashville Predators on Saturday, but a terrifying injury prevented the Avs’ evening from being all positive. Goalkeeper Darcy Kümper injured his eye after hitting a racquet in the face late in the first period, forcing him out of the game for good.

With the Avalanche leading 2-1 in the second half and with less than a minute to go, Predators center Ryan Johansen appeared to have accidentally poked his stick through Kuemper’s mask. Kümper immediately landed on the ice and began writing in pain as medical personnel rushed to his side.

After a few moments, Kuemper got off the ice and headed into the dressing room while holding a towel over his face. Here’s how the incident went:

Coach Jared Bednar downplayed the extent of Kuemper’s injury after the game, saying the keeper was swollen but otherwise fine. Kuemper, Bednar said, could potentially play as early as Monday’s Game 4.

“He was checked out immediately and when we got back out we had information it wasn’t going to be too serious,” Bednar said, according to the AP. “Not serious enough for him [to] can come back, but at least he’s able to see and do all that that made us all feel better, I think.”

Kuemper, who ranks fifth among NHL goalies this postseason with a 1.41 goal average, amassed 10 saves before his injury. His replacement, Pavel Francouz, added another 18 saves to see the Avalanche advance to the first round in a single game.

The Western Conference No. 1 Avalanche can knock out the No. 8 seed Predators with a win Monday at 9:30 p.m. ET in Nashville.

https://www.cbssports.com/nhl/news/avalanche-g-darcy-kuemper-hit-in-eye-area-by-stick-leaves-stanley-cup-playoff-game-3-win-over-predators/ Avalanche G Darcy Kuemper gets hit in the eye area with a stick allowing Stanley Cup Playoff Game 3 to be won over Predators

Justin Scacco

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