Being a backup goalie isn’t always easy. It requires patience, especially when you’re sitting behind one of the better goalies in the NHL in 2015-16. Blackhawks goalie has waited his turn and now he finally has an opportunity to show his worth to his team and the league.
With starter Corey Crawford out because of an upper-body injury, Darling has come in and done a good job in Chicago’s crease. He has a modest 1-1-1 record in Crawford’s absence, but he’s allowed just five goals during that span.
“Obviously I wish it were different circumstances. We don’t want Corey to be hurt; we miss him for sure,” Darling said after Sunday’s shootout loss to Minnesota, per CSN Chicago. “But I’m happy to be playing. It’s good for me to get a little momentum going. Even though I’m 1-1-1, I feel like I’ve played pretty well. It’s good going forward that I’ll have this experience.”
Crawford is considered day-to-day which means he’ll probably return fairly soon, but the ‘Hawks aren’t worried. They have confidence knowing they can have success with either one of their goaltenders.
“At the end of the day, our goaltenders have been great. It goes back to just focusing on things like our penalty kill and defensive play and helping them out as much as we can,” Jonathan Toews said. “It always gives you confidence if you can have two guys who can jump in and help your team. Crow is needing some time off, Scotty can step in and we still feel that depth and security back there.”
The Blackhawks have all but secured a spot in the 2016 playoffs. At this point, they’re just looking to improve their positioning in the Central Division. Chicago currently sits in third place behind Dallas (four points ahead) and St. Louis (two points ahead).