Trevor Smith will not be resting this Friday night.
The native of Ottawa, Ontario will be on the ice at the Scope in Norfolk, VA, playing for the Norfolk Admirals in the first game of the 2012 Calder Cup Finals. The Admirals, the top minor league affiliate of the NHL's Tampa Bay Lightning, cruised through the first three rounds of the Calder Cup Playoffs, defeating the Manchester Monarchs, the Connecticut Whale and the St. John's IceCaps to win the AHL's Eastern Conference title.
That sets up a matchup against the Western Conference champions, the Toronto Marlies (affiliate of the Toronto Maple Leafs). The teams will face off on Friday and Saturday night in Norfolk, then head to Toronto for the third, fourth and (if necessary) fifth games, scheduled for June 7, 9, and 10 respectively. If necessary, the sixth and seventh games of the series are scheduled for June 13 and 15 in Norfolk.
Smith has been a key player for the Admirals during their run to the finals. Norfolk's second leading scorer during the regular season with 26 goals and 43 assists in 64 games—he also had two goals and three assists in 16 games for the Lightning—Smith is Norfolk's top assist man in the playoffs, with nine helpers to go with four goals, second only to Alexandre Picard in points with 13. With Norfolk requiring just 14 games to reach the finals, Smith is averaging just under a point per game.
A Calder Cup win over the Marlies could cap off a career year for Smith. His 69 points were a career high at the AHL level, and he had the opportunity to play in the NHL for the first time in two seasons, showing significant improvement over his previous appearance in the league (a seven-game stint with the New York Islanders during the 2009-10 season). Now, he's had a hot hand for Norfolk in the playoffs, setting the stage for a more significant NHL run in 2012-13. All in all, not bad for a guy who was undrafted coming out of the British Columbia Hockey League and got his chance as an undrafted free agent out of the University of New Hampshire.
Of course, Trevor Smith is hoping it gets better still.
J-Connection: Trevor Smith is Jewish.