Four years ago, I would have given Scott Darling a snowball's chance in Hell of playing in the NHL, let alone the Stanley Cup playoffs. The former Phoenix Coyotes' draft pick had fallen through the ranks of minor league hockey to the SPHL. I had a  great vantage point from which to watch the talented young man under perform, the penalty box.

Alcoholism and social anxiety had hampered his career to that point. Mental health professionals often say it takes hitting "Rock Bottom" for a person to realize they need help. Scott took the steps to turn his life, and career around beginning in 2011.

Last July, the Chicago Blackhawks signed him to a 1 year contract. His first NHL start was a 2-1 victory over Ottawa, in which he made 32 saves. In March, he shut out the New York Rangers, winners of the President's Cup.

According to Wikipedia, Scott is the first former SPHL player to play in the NHL. The Blackhawks have signed him to a 2 year extension.

I didn't get to know Scott personally, but I'm happy to see he's turned his life around.

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