DETROIT – The Detroit Red Wings today recalled right wing Givani Smith from the American Hockey League’s Grand Rapids Griffins.
Smith, 21, has picked up four points (2-2-4) and seven penalty minutes in four games with the Griffins this season, missing one game due to injury and one due to suspension in his second professional season. In his rookie pro campaign in 2018-19, Smith logged 13 points (6-7-13), a plus-two rating and 86 penalty minutes in 64 games for Grand Rapids. After making his professional debut with a three-game stint with the Griffins in 2016-17, Smith registered his first AHL point on Nov. 4, 2018 at Cleveland before scoring his first professional goal on Dec. 7, 2018 at Rockford. The 6-foot-2, 210-pound forward posted a late-season three-game point streak from March 23-26, 2019 and also chipped in two assists and nine penalty minutes in four postseason games.
The Toronto, Ontario, native was selected by Detroit in the second round (46th overall) of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft and spent four seasons in the Ontario Hockey League prior to turning professional. In 236 games with the Barrie Colts, Guelph Storm and Kitchener Rangers from 2014-18, Smith tallied 135 points (73-62-135) and 411 penalty minutes, leading the league in penalty minutes in consecutive seasons in 2015-16 and 2016-17. In his final OHL campaign split between Guelph and Kitchener in 2017-18, Smith picked up 30 points (17-13-30) in 46 regular-season games before racking up 18 points (11-7-18) in 18 playoff games with Kitchener.
With Luke Glendening sidelined, the Wings still have Christoffer Ehn who could slot in and fulfill the defensive responsibilities Glendening leaves behind, but a team struggling to score goals and in need of some additional snarl could very much use Givani Smith at his best against a tough Sabres team motivated by last night’s loss to the Rangers.