Red Wings prospect Givani Smith tells the Detroit News’s Ted Kulfan that his first professional season was something of a crash course in adjusting and adapting from playing major junior hockey to learning how to play the professional game. As a result, Smith believes that he’s better-equipped to push for a spot on the Wings’ roster this season:
Smith made his professional debut last October with the Griffins, the Red Wings’ minor-league affiliate, and the season turned out to be one long class on pro hockey.
Smith, 21, had plenty to learn. More than he expected.
And though Smith didn’t pass with flying colors, he certainly didn’t fail. It was a passing grade, so to speak, with the expectation Smith will keep adjusting and thriving to the professional game.
“Just learning many small things,” Smith said, of what he learned in particular in the American League.
“Like sleeping habits, and small techniques you have to learn. Practice. You have to focus on many things that translate into the pro game.
“Coming from junior, it’s different playing against men, guys who’ve been there 10-plus, or 5-plus years. It’s a transition — and that’s what I did (transition).”