Originally, he was best known as a seven-card stud player, where he had several notable tournament finishes in 2000 prior to winning the World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelet in 2001 for the $2,500 seven-card stud event, defeating Tom Franklin heads-up.
In 2002, Darden won a World Poker Tour (WPT) title in the $3,000 main event of the Gold Rush tournament. He would later finish in 2nd place behind Gus Hansen in the WPT Bad Boys of Poker invitational event. Additionally, in March 2005 he finished 5th in the $10,000 main event of the PartyPoker.com Million IV cruise.
In 2003, he made his first money finish in the $10,000 WSOP main event, finishing in 45th place. He cashed in the same event in 2005.
Darden is also the mentor of professional poker player Amnon Filippi.
As of 2010, his total live tournament winnings exceed $2,100,000 with his 16 cashes at the WSOP accounting for $287,456 of those winnings.