On March 29th, 2018 Scott Foster woke up a 36 year old accountant and ended the day as a goaltender for the Chicago Blackhawks, celebrating a flawless performance in a win over the Winnipeg Jets. Scott has become one of the most unique pieces of NHL history and symbolizes all our dreams and childhood fantasies. He represents that little glimmer of hope that anything is possible and it’s never too late to get an opportunity and seize it. An insane series of coincidences led to Scott’s once in a lifetime chance and he certainly grabbed it.
Every NHL team has an emergency goaltender, usually someone who has played hockey at some point in their life, but never professionally. This person stays on standby for the extremely unlikely situation they will be needed to fill in. How rare is something like this? Well, it’s rare enough that up until March 29th, 2018 it had never happened.
Chicago’s usual starter Corey Crawford was out injured so their backup Anton Forsberg was going to start the game and minor leaguer, Collin Delia was brought in to be his backup. In the most freak of freak injuries Forsberg gets injured in the pre-game warm ups kicking a soccer ball around and Delia is now going to be starting with Foster backing him up. With the Blackhawks leading the Jets 6-2 Delia goes down with an injury with 14 minutes and 1 second remaining in the game. For the first time in NHL history an emergency goalie is going to play in an emergency situation.
A 6-2 lead with 14 minutes to play is usually a safe bet, but not anymore. You have a 36 year old accountant who hasn’t played high level hockey since he played for Western Michigan over a decade ago coming into the game. No one would blame him, even the announcers wondered allowed if he’d even be able to make a stop.
The Jets are one of the deadliest group of scorers in the league, every shot could be a goal in this situation. That’s not what happened though. In fact none of the shots resulted in goals. Scott played in the NHL for 14 minutes, faced 7 shots and stopped every single one of them. The rec-league goalie that played a couple of seasons of college hockey over a decade ago stepped into an NHL game with the best players on the planet and didn’t make a single mistake. The highlight came with the Jets on the power play. Young superstar Patrick Laine slid a cross crease pass over to Paul Stastny and Foster made a sprawling save to shut the door and take away what could have easily been a goal even against an NHL goalie.
The game was special. The reaction of the crowd going crazy and the rest of the Blackhawks roster mobbing Foster when the final horn sounded was something to see. Even if it was only for one night, Scott Foster was an NHL goaltender.
This is special because it’s something everyone can connect with. Scott Foster is just an every day regular guy who got a chance to live out a dream and it couldn’t have gone any better if it had been scripted. Everyone wants to be Scott Foster. For one night we got to share in witnessing a moment that transcends sports. Everyone has dreams and everyone has that little glimmer of hope that maybe one day they’ll get to live out their fantasy. For one night Scott Foster got to be a hero.