It seems like figuring out how they might add Evgeni Nabokov is the least of the Tampa Bay Lightning’s problems in net right now.
In an odd bit of timing, the team called up prospect Cedrick Desjardins (as they planned for more than a month) only to see Mike Smith injure himself hours later during their afternoon skate. Damian Cristodero reports that Smith stormed off from practice and didn’t provide much information about his left knee.
Cristodero reports that Smith got injured when Simon Gagne – another player very familiar with the injured list – rounded the net and clipped Smith’s leg.
Smith was slated to start tonight’s game against the Carolina Hurricanes, but Dan Ellis said he’s ready if the team decides to give him the nod.
“If Smith is injured it might be an opportunity somewhere in there to give (Desjardins) a game,” Boucher said. “But right now I don’t want to think Smith is injured. He was doing well. The team was doing well with him in net. It would be real sad for him.”
As for Gagne, he said he did not realize he might have clipped Smith.
“I don’t know,” Gagne said. “If I touched him, maybe I touched him a little bit. I’m not sure. I hope it’s not too bad.”
Boucher said if Smith checks out okay, he will play against Carolina.
Smith is one of the NHL’s most injury prone goalies, so this could be yet another problem for the unlucky netminder. We’ll keep you updated about his status.