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2018-19 Player Report Card: Mike Smith

It was rocky for a bit for Mike Smith, but he was lights out over the last two months of the season.

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Calgary Flames at Colorado Avalanche Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Mike Smith: Goaltender

Regular Season: 42 GP, 23-16-2, 2.72 GAA, .898 Save%

Playoffs: 5 GP, 1-4-0, 3.20 GAA, .917 Save%

Individual Grades

MarkParkinson14 = (B) Where to begin with Mike Smith? Smith started the season as the #1, then found himself sitting behind a red hot David Rittich for a good chunk of the season, then found himself as the starter in February and Calgary rode the veteran keeper to the playoffs and through the playoffs. Does that all make sense? Mike Smith had one of those seasons where you loved him at times, hated him at times and weren’t sure what to think at times. With that said, overall he was a steady presence for the Flames and his stretch run to the playoffs was a major help to a Calgary team that seemed to be losing some faith in David Rittich. Smith was also a major reason the Flames had any sort of shot in their series against the Avalanche. Smith faced 105 shots over two games in the five game series and was one of the few Calgary players to show up in round one. It’s a shame that what could be one of his last performances in Calgary was overshadowed by horrible team play around him. He deserved much better than what he got.

Madeline Campbell = (B-) I want to start off by echoing Mark’s sentiments, that it’s a shame how things ended, this season, with Smith. Because he was just about lights out in the playoffs, but it just wasn’t enough to bail out the just about full systems failure. He did what he could.

All in all, Mike Smith had a fine season. He wasn’t stellar, but he did enough to get the team some wins when he was tasked with starting. The sub-.900 save percentage isn’t great, particularly on a team that, generally speaking, did well at limiting chances for their opponents, so we do have to drop his grade some for that. But we should also credit him for showing up when he needed to. He wasn’t always flashy, he just did what was asked of him, and that’s hard to complain about.

MGMacGillivray = (B-) Mike Smith is a difficult guy to grade because as the games got tougher late in the season, he got better. He was one of the only Flames to show up in the playoffs, and was the guy down the stretch as David Rittich battled an injury we didn’t know about until after the season. He just had such a poor start to the year that it permanently submerged his numbers, leaving no real recovery options. At 37 the Flames could very well move on from Smith, but he could also be a very cheap guy to bring back for a year, especially for a guy they seem to like. Don’t know if it’s the right idea, but on a cap-crunched team, Calgary may be looking for all possible savings.