Tampa Bay Lightning goaltender Mike Smith out a week with fractured finger
Tampa Bay Lightning goaltender Mike Smith will be out at least a week with a slight fracture of the tip of his right ring finger. Smith was hurt at Monday's practice by a shot from teammate Steven Stamkos. After practice, Smith drove himself for X-rays at the office of team medical director Ira Guttentag.
Smith will not start in Tuesday's preseason opener at Dallas, as had been planned. Dan Ellis will play the entire game and be backed up by Cedrick Desjardins.
Smith said the timetable for his return will be determined more on his comfort level. That he was injured with the hand that holds the stick makes that a bit more problematic because of the vibrations of the stick when hit by a puck. Still, Smith said he has not ruled out going on the ice Wednesday and working out with goaltenders coach Frantz Jean, though he didn't anticipate taking any shots.
Smith has been bitten by the injury bug lately. His 2008-09 season was ended by a concussion and he missed six games last season with a neck strain. Given he is in the final year of his deal and admitted he has lots to prove to the new coaching staff and management, the setback is a bit frustrating.
"Any time you get an injury, big or small, it's frustrating," Smith said. "I think I've had a good camp so far, and having a little injury now can get to you, but it's not as serious as it could have been. I have to look at the positive and not dwell on it."