The Detroit Red Wings announced today that they have re-signed Givani Smith to a two-year deal. Smith’s salary has yet to be announced.
UPDATE: The Detroit #RedWings today re-singed left wing Givani Smith to a two-year contract.
— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) September 14, 2021
Givani Smith Re-Signed by Detroit Red Wings
Smith’s two-year deal indicates that the Red Wings see him as a part of their future. Last season, he split his season between the Red Wings and the Grand Rapids Griffins, Detroit’s AHL affiliate. In 16 games in Hockeytown, Smith obtained four points, 28 hits, and 21 penalty minutes. He scored his first Gordie Howe Hat Trick — a goal, assist, and fight — on February 9th against the Florida Panthers. The Red Wings drafted Smith 46th overall in the second round of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft.
Smith has seven points and 30 penalty minutes in 37 games with the Red Wings. His skillset is best utilized as a counter to the tough players meant to break a team. This unique ability makes him a favored player in high-intensity matchups against more physical teams. The Red Wings often utilized Smith last season to counter players like Ryan Lomberg and Radko Gudas. It’s likely he’ll reprise that role in the upcoming season.
What This Means for the Red Wings
Smith has been referenced by many as an affordable alternative to Justin Abdelkader in his prime. He can play tough minutes against difficult competition without backing down. Additionally, his physicality brings a dimension to the game that the Red Wings have needed since Niklas Kronwall’s retirement. Smith went toe-to-toe against Gudas and has consistently held his own against some of the league’s tougher players. If he makes the roster, the Red Wings will likely deploy him on the fourth line, matching him up against tougher players like Tom Wilson or Ryan Reaves.
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