Edmonton Oilers Mike Smith out with thumb injury

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Once again, Edmonton Oilers goaltender Mike Smith is injured. He’s expected to be out for at least a week.

“Mike Smith had an MRI on his thumb yesterday, was found to have a partial tear of his tendon,” explained head coach Dave Tipett after practice on Thursday. “He practiced yesterday, was bothering him, decided to get some pictures taken of it.

“It’s an injury that’s got to be given time for it to settle down.”

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Smith revealed on the weekend that he sprained his right thumb on Dec. 31 stopping a breakaway in overtime against the New Jersey Devils. He missed the next two games before returning last Wednesday in Toronto.

Smith, 39, also missed over two months with a lower body injury suffered against Anaheim on Oct. 19.

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Mikko Koskinen was the only goalie on the ice for Thursday’s practice. Taxi squad goalie Ilya Konovalov has been in COVID protocol since the weekend. Stuart Skinner has been reassigned from Bakersfield in the AHL to the taxi squad.

“We’re trying to get him here as quick as we can,” explained Tippett. “He’s played very well down there. We’re very comfortable bringing him up and playing him. He’s shown he can play at this level.”

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Kailer Yamamoto rejoined the team Thursday after being in COVID protocol.

The Oilers host the Ottawa Senators Saturday night at 8 p.m. Coverage on 630 CHED starts with the Face-off Show at 6:30 p.m.

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