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Vancouver Canucks sign goaltender Jiří Patera and forward Nate Smith to two-way contracts

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Photo credit:Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports
Tyson Cole
10 days ago
Just when we thought the Vancouver Canucks were done, Patrik Allvin didn’t stop there! The Canucks General Manager announced that they’ve signed former Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Jiří Patera and former Arizona Coyotes/Utah Hockey Club forward Nate Smith.
 
Patera signed a two-year, two-way contract.
Patera, 25, is a young goaltender who spent most of the season with the Golden Knights’ affiliate team, the Henderson Silver Knights. He finished with an 11-10-4 record, a 2.99 goals-against average, and a .903 save percentage. While these numbers don’t look very exciting — especially for the AHL — considering the state of the Silver Knights last season, seeing the save percentage in the .900s is quite impressive. Henderson finished with the sixth-worst record across the entire AHL last season.
The Czech goaltender’s efforts in the AHL earned him a call-up to Vegas. Patera appeared in six games and finished with a 1-3-1 record, a 3.98 goals against average, and a .893 save percentage.
It was rumoured the Canucks were in the goaltender market this offseason after they were unable to come to terms with Casey DeSmith. Well, it looks like they’ve found that netminder in Patera.
Smith signed a one-year, two-way contract.
Smith, 25, is a skilled forward who played most of his time with the Coyotes affiliate, the Tuscon Roadrunners. In 60 games with the Roadrunners, Smith scored 12 goals and 19 points for 31 points. The Tampa native has two goals and four points in 14 career NHL games. The Canucks made Smith a priority once they lost Sheldon Dries to the Detroit Red Wings and projects to be a big part of the Abbotsford team this season.
A Winnipeg scout said this about Smith when they drafted him in the third round in 2018: “He’s got a real unique skill level and ability to handle pucks and make plays through guy’s feet, stuff you don’t see very often.”
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