"Diving." When you think of diving in the NHL, you think of the Vancouver Canucks. Now, in watching the Western Conference finals, Phoenix goalie Mike Smith has been acting like he has been shot whenever someone comes near his net. Smith's play has been outstanding in the first two rounds, and is the only reason Phoenix has made it this far, but the way he is acting in these playoffs and this series with LA is a disgrace. I Don't think Chicago's Andrew Shaw deserved a 3 game suspension for running in to Smith in the first round. I think Smith's acting sold Brendan Shanahan, when one game was sufficient or the in game penalty itself was enough.
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Smith barely getting touched by Dwight King in game 2, where Smith flopped to the ice, is not fair to the referee's who are trying to protect all the goalies. The ref has no choice but to call interference. Same thing happened to Anze Kopitar (who is rarely in the penalty box) in game 1, he was pushed into Smith and the acting sold yet another call. Smith seems to play like a spoiled brat who doesn't get his own way. He gets pissed off whenever he allows a goal, and some say this is his competitive side, but I disagree. Smith lost his cool again in game 2, when he slashed Dustin Brown in the back of the leg, when Brown did nothing to Smith to warrant such a gutless hack. Brown could have been injured badly and if he was to go down, it would be a huge blow to Los Angeles. Brown has been getting under Phoenix players skin, but no one wants to see that kind of a play in the NHL.
When you have LA's Jonathan Quick on the other end, playing the game with style and grace, Smith's bush league play seems more apparent. Don't get me wrong, Quick will get a little hot under the collar, but usually he stays level headed. Smith is just not playing the game right and needs to take a look in the mirror. All eyes are on him right now, and his great season is coming to a screaming halt. Smith needs to stay focused and just play goal, and stop auditioning for a movie...or trying to make the swim team.
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