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BLOG: Smith expecting healthy tandem with Koskinen, fired up for BoA

"I think Mikko is a real big guy that has a lot of upside and I'm going to do everything I can to help him out," said Oilers goaltender Mike Smith

by Paul Gazzola /

EDMONTON, AB - Goaltender Mike Smith is prepared to support fellow netminder Mikko Koskinen any way he can.

"I think Mikko is a real big guy that has a lot of upside and I'm going to do everything I can to help him out," Smith, 37, said via phone to Edmonton reporters on Monday.

The guardian, who holds an all-time record of 243-236-68, also wants to help the Oilers return to the postseason. The club's last playoff appearance came in the 2016-17 season when they made it to the second round.

"I owe that to him (Koskinen), I owe that to the players I play with in this League," he said. "I'm a veteran guy now and understand my role, but still feel like I can bring a lot to the table and I'm going to do everything I can this year to get Oil Country back into the playoffs."

Smith added that he sees plenty of opportunity in goal for the upcoming season.

"From what's been relayed to me, if you play well you're going to play," Smith added. "That's all you can ask for as a player and it's up to you to go in there and play well and make them not want to take you out."

Video: AUDIO | Mike Smith Interview

Oilers President of Hockey Operations and General Manager Ken Holland held a media availability on Monday, checking a box off by signing Smith to the one-year pact.

"When I was announced two months ago, what I was hoping to accomplish in the summertime - so, still two months to go - was to get another goaltender to go with Koskinen," Holland said. "Obviously, Dave Tippett had Mike Smith in Dallas. He's a very, very competitive guy and he can handle the puck. 

"We feel good about our tandem in goal."

Smith went 23-16-2 last season with a 2.72 goals-against average and .898 save percentage with the Calgary Flames. Given his recent history with Edmonton's provincial rival, the keeper knows what to expect when the Oilers and Flames clash in 2019-20.

"The Battle of Alberta is real life," Smith said. "It's a lot of fun to be a part of and obviously I'm switching teams now, but that's not going to stop me from being a competitive player. 

"That's how I play, and I'm looking forward to being in an Oilers uniform to experience that from a different perspective this year."

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