The Carolina Hurricanes on again, off again relationship with goaltender Scott Darling continues as the Hurricanes have recalled him with current starter Curtis McElhinney dealing with a lower-body injury. The team hopes that the 29-year-old, who was placed on waivers on Nov. 29, can regain his form this time around.
Darling has hardly been a success since the Hurricanes picked up Darling in an offseason trade in 2017. Carolina immediately signed the heralded backup in Chicago to a four-year, $16.6MM contract, but he struggled when he took over as a full-time starter with a 3.18 GAA and a .888 save percentage in 43 games. The team had high hopes that Darling would bounce back this season as there was constant talk during the offseason that Darling had been working out incredibly hard. However, the results weren’t impressive early in training camp and the team claimed McElhinney off waivers from Toronto to help out in net, giving the team three goaltenders with backup Petr Mrazek in tow as well. However, his numbers were just as bad during the regular season in seven appearances as he posted a 3.14 GAA and a .892 save percentage.
No team claimed Darling as his poor numbers and high-priced contract was too much for any team. However, he has fared much better with the Charlotte Checkers in the AHL over the last couple of weeks as he has made five appearances and has a 2.35 GAA and a .911 save percentage. He was pulled in last night’s game against the Springfield Thunderbirds, but it was likely because the team learned of the call-up then.