Darren Van Impe pulled on a real NHL sweater at the 1993 NHL Entry Draft when the New York Islanders selected him in the seventh round. Before the 1994-95 campaign, the former Prince Albert Raider and Red Deer Rebel was traded to the Anaheim Mighty Ducks. For most of the season he was in the IHL with the San Diego Gulls until the Ducks called him up for his major league debut in latter stages of the season.
After four seasons with the Mighty Ducks, the Boston Bruins claimed Van Impe off waivers in the early stages of the 1997-98 season. The Bruins had seen a young defenseman who could play with the savvy of a veteran. The team rose 30 points from the previous season as Van Impe stuck to the basics. A hyper-extended elbow limited him to 60 games in 1998-99. The next season saw him establish a career in points with 28.
At the end of the 1999-00 season he underwent shoulder surgery which limited the Saskatoon native to a mere 31 games in 2000-01. Over the next two seasons Van Impe had stops with the New York Rangers, the Florida Panthers, the New York Islanders and Columbus Blue Jackets while playing a handful of games with the Blue Jackets AHL affiliate in Syracuse