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Mike Danton hopes to return to NHL as his parole sentence ends this week


FILE - In this 2003 handout photo provided by the NHL, St. Louis Blues forward Mike Danton is shown. Danton has been granted full parole after pleading guilty five years ago in a failed murder-for-hire plot. Friday’s decision followed a hearing before the National Parole Board in Canada. Danton was sentenced to 7½ years in prison in the U.S. He was transferred to a facility in the Kingston, Ontario, area in March, when he became eligible for full parole. (AP Photo/NHL, File) ** MAGS OUT, NO SALES **


In some ways, it’s hard to believe that Mike Danton played in the NHL as recently as the 2004 playoffs. In fact, he scored a goal on his only career playoff shot on April 13, 2004, just three days before he was arrested and charged with conspiracy to commit murder when he attempted to hire a hitman to kill his then-agent David Frost.

(Deadspin provides a nice rundown of the very odd story here.)

He eventually was sentenced to seven and a half years in prison on November 8, 2004 for the failed murder plot. Danton received full parole on September 11, 2009, according to Hockey He resumed his hockey career at Saint Mary’s in Halifax, Nova Scotia recently, but is hoping for more going forward. With Danton’s parole sentence ending on Friday, the Associated Press reports that the troubled forward hopes to make a return to the NHL. That being said, Danton admits that the odds are against him.

Even without his troubled background, a player with a marginal impact like Danton made in his career (nine goals and five assists for 14 points, a -8 rating and 141 PIM in 87 career games) would struggle to return to the highest level after such a long layoff.

He’s obviously been through a lot after that bizarre ordeal, but he faces the kind of odds that would be far fetched even for a Disney movie, let alone an unforgiving sport like hockey. We wish him the best as he tries to move along with his life, whether that happens on the ice or sitting in a cubicle.