Was Scott Darling the right option for the Carolina Hurricanes to go with entering the 2017-18 campaign? If not, these goalies could have been.
As the season continues to go by, the Carolina Hurricanes are getting a clearer picture of why supposed starting goalie Scott Darling is not the answer, long-term. Cam Ward is getting the bulk of the starts since the final games in December.
The real shame is that the Canes bought into Darling before he even played a single game with the franchise. Through nearly 30 games this season, Darling has less than 10 wins and a save percentage of just .892. Meanwhile, Ward is producing at his usual level between the pipes.
Ward just looks a lot better this season since Darling is not performing anywhere close to what was expected. If Darling can find his groove anytime soon, it would be a very welcome sight for every Canes fans. However, it seems like every time Darling is about to break out of his funk, he has an even worse performance in his following start.
In his time with the Chicago Blackhawks, Darling put his best foot forward, helping the Hawks bring home the 2015 Stanley Cup. But, the Canes have not received the same play from Darling that he showed while backing up Corey Crawford, and splitting time with Antti Raanta.
Moreover, there was some hope that it would just take Darling some time to get comfortable as Carolina’s starting goaltender, much like it did Raanta with the Arizona Coyotes. While Raanta is playing better with Arizona, Darling’s play has not improved at all.
The last time Darling got a start was in an eventual 5-1 loss to the Vegas Golden Knights, on Jan. 21. Darling gave up three goals on eight shots in that home defeat. The hindsight of focusing on who would have been the best solution for the Canes beside Darling is starting to take effect.
Here’s 5 goaltending options that would have been better for the Carolina Hurricanes than Scott Darling.