MINNESOTA WILD REASSIGNS DARCY KUEMPER TO HOUSTON AEROS
Houston Releases Forward Kirk MacDonald
Houston, TX – Minnesota Wild General Manager Chuck Fletcher on Wednesday announced the National Hockey League (NHL) club has activated goaltender Darcy Kuemper off Injured Reserve and reassigned him to the Houston Aeros of the American Hockey League (AHL). In addition, Houston Aeros General Manager Jim Mill announced the club has released forward Kirk MacDonald from a professional tryout agreement (PTO).
Kuemper, 22 (5/5/90), went 1-2-0 with a 2.22 goals-against average (GAA) and a .924 save percentage (SV%) in four games with Minnesota. The 6-foot-5, 207-pound native of Saskatoon, Sask., made his NHL debut at Vancouver on Feb. 12 and stopped 28-of-30 shots faced in a 2-1 loss. He earned his first career NHL win making 29 saves in a 3-2 victory against Detroit on Feb. 17.
Kuemper is 10-6-0 with a 1.79 GAA, a .938 SV% and four shutouts in 16 games for Houston this season. He ranked second in the AHL in GAA and SV% and tied for fourth in shutouts when he was recalled on Feb. 12.
Kuemper appeared in 19 games with the Aeros in 2011-12 and went 6-6-4 with a 2.36 GAA, a .923 SV% and one shutout. He also played in eight games with the Ontario Reign (ECHL) and posted a 7-1-0 record with a 1.74 GAA and a .941 SV%. Kuemper was named the Western Hockey League (WHL) Goaltender and Player of the Year in 2010-11 after compiling a record of 45-12-15 with a 1.86 GAA, a .933 SV% and 13 shutouts in 62 games for the Red Deer Rebels. He ranked first in the WHL in wins, GAA, SV% and shutouts. Kuemper was selected by Minnesota in the sixth round (161st overall) of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.
MacDonald played in a total of four games for Houston after signing with the club on Feb. 6. He played in a pair of games prior to suffering an injury that led to him miss nine games. He returned to the Aeros line-up over the past weekend for a pair of games in Charlotte. In all, MacDonald played in four games for Houston without registering a point.
He will return to Reading of the ECHL, where he played in 43 games prior to joining Houston. The 29-year old forward scored 13 goals and added 19 assists for 32 points with the Royals. The Victoria, BC native has played in 270 AHL games, mostly with Providence from 2008-12. For his AHL career, MacDonald has 45 goals and 60 assists for 105 points, to go along with 210 penalty minutes.
After playing 12 of their last 13 games on the road, the Aeros return home on Thursday, Mar. 14 at 7 p.m. as the team hosts Abbotsford at Toyota Center. The game marks a “Thirsty Thursday”, where fans (21 and older) receive a “second drink free coupon” for The Maple Leaf Pub (Smith and Elgin). The first 500 fans to The Maple Leaf Pub after the game will be able to redeem their coupon for their second drink free.
Information on mini-plans for the remainder of the season is available on the team website at www.aeros.com. Groups of 15 or more receive a discount on all tickets, to book your group outing to an Aeros game please call 713-974-PUCK (7825).
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