GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The Phoenix Coyotes placed goalie Mike Smith on the injured reserve list Monday retroactive to Jan. 23, when he suffered a groin injury in pregame warm-ups and lasted only nine minutes against the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Smith is eligible to come off the list for Wednesday’s home game against Edmonton. But he returned to the ice in full gear on Monday for the first time since the injury occurred and he’s not expected to return until at least Friday, when Phoenix is in Dallas for the first of a home-and-home series against the Stars.
The 1-4-0 Coyotes played American Hockey League call-up Chad Johnson against Nashville on Monday night after backup Jason LaBarbera struggled in losses to San Jose and Los Angeles.
I definitely think going back down helped me, I had a lot of confidence down there, I played a lot of minutes and I think that helped me a lot. With the 37 games up here, that gave me experience as well. I know what it takes to play in the NHL and now it's time for me to show that I'm capable of being a full-time NHL player.
— Oilers forward Leon Draisaitl on finishing the 2014-15 season in juniors after playing 37 games with Edmonton to begin the season