Oilers remove goaltender Mike Smith from LTIR ahead of Blues game

Edmonton Oilers goaltender Mike Smith speaks about his injury and why this one was different compared to previous ailments.

Edmonton Oilers goaltender Mike Smith has officially been removed from the long-term injured reserve list (LTIR), the team announced Wednesday.

The 39-year-old has been on the LTIR for more than two months with an undisclosed injury.

“It’s honestly been one of the most difficult injuries of my career,” said Smith, who exited during the Oilers’ third game of the season on Oct. 19 and hasn’t played since.

In addition to Smith, defenceman Duncan Keith, forward Zach Hyman and head coach Dave Tippett will return to the bench after exiting COVID-19 protocols this week.

On Tuesday, the veteran netminder said he was available for Wednesday’s game against the St. Louis Blues (17-9-5).

The Kingston, Ont., native is 2-0 with a 3.08 goals-against average and .920 save percentage this season. In 645 NHL games — spanning back to 2006 — Smith owns a .912 save percentage and a 2.69 goals against average.

The Edmonton Oilers (18-11-0) are fourth in the Pacific, ahead of Wednesday’s game.

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