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About Last Season: Brendan Smith

The longtime NHL veteran came in on a near-league minimum deal and brought more than enough value on and off the ice.

New York Rangers v Carolina Hurricanes - Game Seven Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images

Brendan Smith 21-22 By the Numbers

  • Age: 33
  • NHL Seasons: 11
  • Scoring: 4 Goals, 4 Assists, 7 Points in 45 games
  • Playoff Scoring: 1 goals, 3 assists, 4 points in 14 games
  • Advances Statistics: 57.26 CF%, 52.87 SCF%, 54.36 xGF%, 54.76 GF%
  • Average TOI: 13:55 ES, 0:01 PP, 1:04 SH
  • Contract Status: Unrestricted Free Agent

When the Carolina Hurricanes signed Brendan Smith as a depth blueline piece, the expectations for the veteran were not very high.

Many saw him as a seventh or even eighth defenseman who could come in in case of injuries and nobody really predicted he’d get into as many games as he did.

And surprisingly enough, in those games, Smith was a solid piece and he probably played his best hockey as a Hurricane in the postseason against the Boston Bruins in Round 1.

A third-pair/seventh defenseman is never going to be anything to write home about, but Smith brought a steady, physical presence on the ice and an uplifting, veteran presence off of it.

One of the things Smith talked frequently about was providing insight and tips on the game to his younger teammates, much like had been done for him in Detroit when he was an up and coming player.

He was a team-first guy who stood up for his teammates and even took it upon himself to bite the bullet a few times when needed.

The most telling was from a blowout win against the Washington Capitals on March 28, where Tom Wilson was looking to cause trouble as he always does and Smith decided to take one for the team and drop the gloves with him.

And this was only a few weeks after returning from a fractured skull as well.

Smith knew his role, did his job and even delivered a few timely goals here and there.

And no goal in his career was probably as big as his shorthanded, game winner in Game 2 against the New York Rangers this postseason.

Smith played hard every game and although his lack of foot speed left him vulnerable against the rush, he did a very good job of defending in tight. Anybody remember his goal line clears against the Boston Bruins this postseason?

The veteran blueliner drew the ire of some fans by simply being in the lineup because they saw it as him taking a roster spot from other younger or more promising players, but Smith was never a glaring issue.

He’d get caught in no-man’s land here and there, but what third pairing defenseman isn’t that happening to frequently?

He was a cheap piece that played hard and provided support to the lineup. He wasn’t really anything special, but you’ll take that from a defenseman.

Exit Interview


How would you grade Brendan Smith’s 2021-22 performance?

This poll is closed

  • 9%
    A - Outstanding Performance
    (21 votes)
  • 47%
    B - Above Average Performance
    (102 votes)
  • 39%
    C - Average Performance
    (84 votes)
  • 2%
    D - Below Average Performance
    (5 votes)
  • 0%
    F - Significantly Below Average Performance
    (2 votes)
214 votes total Vote Now

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