It would appear that Mike Smith is good to go.
Jon Gillies, who was up with the Flames on an emergency recall basis, has been returned to the Stockton Heat in the AHL. As nobody else has been called up, and the Flames require two goalies in order to play, this seems like an indication that Smith will be set to return for Saturday morning’s game against the Philadelphia Flyers.
Smith missed one and two-thirds of a game with an undisclosed injury. He played the first period in Monday’s contest against the St. Louis Blues, only to suddenly be replaced by Eddie Lack for the final two frames.
Lack got the nod in the contest against Detroit – one in which the entire team failed spectacularly. Lack’s night ended early in the second period after he surrendered his fifth goal of the game, the result of a poor effort by pretty much everybody playing for Calgary.
Gillies came in to relieve Lack. He held down the fort well enough when the scoring bursts calmed down, surrendering only one goal late in the second period to seemingly put the game out of reach for good.
However, he gave up another two goals when the Red Wings somehow ended up with a five-minute major penalty to close out the game, something his stat line absolutely did not deserve. Gillies returns to the AHL with nine saves on 12 shots – a .750 SV% – after 34:53 of play.
Speaking of five-minute major penalties to close out the game, that was courtesy of Matthew Tkachuk’s “spear” which, uh, sure?
This is a spear?
— FlamesNation (@FlamesNation) November 16, 2017
The line brawl began with a fight between Detroit’s Luke Witkowski – career 62 NHL games played, four assists, 97 PIM – and Brett Kulak. With the fight clearly over, Witkowski took the time to slam Kulak’s unprotected head on the ice again, for reasons, which the Flames bench took exception to. Tkachuk also received a game misconduct for “spearing”.
Witkowski has been suspended 10 games, as was expected, while Tkachuk could face further discipline for his role in escalating things into a melee, even though, unless Tkachuk had further words for him, it looks like Witkowski more lost his mind over David Booth’s giving him an ass slap and this is all just so unbelievably stupid.
After what was described as lengthy internal league debate sounds like @NHL will suspend @DetroitRedWings Luke Witkowski 10 games for coming back on the ice. @NHLFlames Matthew Tkachuk will also face a discipline hearing with @NHL tomorrow for his involvement
— Nick Kypreos (@RealKyper) November 16, 2017
A discipline hearing is very vague wording, and doesn’t necessarily mean Tkachuk will be punished. He could receive a suspension, or be fined, or have absolutely nothing happen to him at all.
I’m clearly biased, but I’m going to bet on a fine, seeing as how Tkachuk didn’t do anything particularly egregious, but it’s also possible Witkowski would have simply left down the tunnel had Tkachuk just left him alone.