Smith Becomes 11th NHL Goalie to Score
GLENDALE -- Mike Smith scored the 14th goal credited to an NHL goaltender when he shot the puck into Detroit's empty net an instant before the final horn of his team's 5-2 victory against the Red Wings on Saturday.
Smith shot the puck down the ice and it crossed the goal line with :00.1 remaining on the clock to become the first goalie in Coyotes/Winnipeg Jets franchise history to score a goal. He made 31 saves as the Coyotes rallied from trailing 2-0.
Smith is the 11th goaltender to be credited with a goal in the regular season or Stanley Cup Playoffs. Martin Brodeur of the New Jersey Devils is tops with three; Ron Hextall had two while playing with the Philadelphia Flyers.
Brodeur was the previous goaltender credited with a goal when he was the last player to touch the puck before Jordan Staal of the Carolina Hurricanes backpassed it into his own net March 21, 2013.
"I'm thrilled with the way we played," Smith said. "It's just a bonus to be able to score a goal in this league... Everything has to work right and the clock has to slow down at the right time of the game to let it trickle in over the line."
NOTE: Click here to watch Smith's postgame remarks.
Smith also scored a goal in his first pro season while playing in the ECHL for Lexington in 2002-03.
Billy Smith, Hextall, Chris Osgood, Damian Rhodes, Brodeur, Jose Theodore, Evgeni Nabokov, Mika Noronen, Chris Mason, and Cam Ward are the other goalies who have scored goals.
"The guys were in my face, so I didn't actually see it until I saw a replay," Smith said. "I do shoot the puck quite often in practice, but an awful lot of things have to go right for that to happen. I was able to score in the ECHL my first year as a pro and it was the same thing. Everything has to work right and the clock has to slow down at the right time to let it trickle over the line. It was just a bonus to a great win."
Ironically, Smith was injured after making a save during the second period, and he lay face down on the ice for several minutes. He eventually got up and stayed in the game.
"It wasn't anything concerning," Smith said. "I had kind of a stinger go up my neck and it kind of locked up."