Give it up for Alex Edler, guys. He was finally able to do what every hockey player in the Western Conference dreams about at night….running over Mike Smith. It’s pretty hard to dislike an NHL goaltender—most of them keep quiet behind their masks, don’t provoke other players, and generally earn the respect of the league for just allowing guys to shoot hard pieces of rubber at them. And then there’s Mike Smith. If his over-exaggerated flip of the glove with every simple save wasn’t enough to annoy you, surely his incessant chirps and dives will do the trick…oh, and let’s not forget about his haircut.
Alright, maybe I’m giving him a hard time since my team of choice isn’t exactly buddy-buddy with the Phoenix Coyotes, but it seems pretty clear to me that the rest of the league agrees on some level that Mike Smith is just a little bit of a drama queen. All I’m saying is that there’s got to be a reason that Smith is a magnet for getting viciously flattened. Thus, he probably deserved this steamrolling from Canucks defenseman Alex Edler, just to wake him up a bit.
You know who probably won’t like this hit? Brendan Shanahan. There’s a hearing scheduled for Friday evening, but it may be the case that the 5-minute charging major called on the ice will suffice. It doesn’t appear that Edler left his feet to make the hit, but rather his feet left the ice as a result of the contact with Smith. Regardless, there’s nothing legal about this play, but the officials made a good call on the ice. We’ll just have to wait and see if Edler gets a Shanaban for this one. Smith finished the 2nd period, but did not return for the 3rd. The Canucks won 2-1.