When you think things cannot get worse for the Chicago Blackhawks, life will prove you wrong. Already without star goalie Corey Crawford, who hasn’t played a game since December 23rd as he remains sidelined with an upper-body injury, the Hawks were expected to start Anton Forsberg in net against the Winnipeg Jets last night.
But then things started to go south, before the game even started...
Forsberg—who himself is a replacement for Crawford —was a scratch after being injured in practice this morning, and so backup Collin Delia took his place. Delia was recalled on an emergency basis yesterday afternoon and started in his first ever NHL game.
But once again, things did not go according to plan when Delia was injured in the third period, with no one on the bench to replace him.
And so the Hawks made the call Scott Foster, a 36-year-old accountant who attends every Blackhawks game as the emergency backup, bringing his equipment along. Foster, whose only hockey stats (.875 save percentage, 3.44 GAA) came at Western Michigan those many years ago came in to save the day.
The former college goalie stopped all seven shots he faced over the final 14 minutes of the Blackhawks' 6-2 victory over the playoff-bound Jets.
"This is something that no one can ever take away from me," Foster said. "It's something that I can go home and tell my kids and they can tell their friends.... Just a ton of fun."
"What a moment," Blackhawks head coach Joel Quenneville said with a chuckle after the game.
After a brief warmup period, Foster settled down in the net and stopped his first shot a minute later. He also made another stop on Tyler Myers and turned away Paul Stastny and Dustin Byfuglien in the final minutes. When it was over, his teammates crowded him in net to congratulate him.
Foster was named the first star of the game!
“I think I’m just hitting my prime,” Foster told the Chicago Sun-Times. “The initial shock happened when I had to dress. And then I think you just kind of black out after that.
“I’m an accountant by day. So a few hours ago I was sitting on my computer typing on the 10-key, and now I’m standing in front of you guys just finished 14 and a half minutes of NHL hockey.”
Let's hope he gets the day off today!
After the game, the Hawks recalled goaltender Jean-Francois Berube from Rockford on an emergency basis. It was however noted that Delia could be back in action on Friday after the scare in the third period.