Journeyman forward Trevor Smith will be back in the AHL next season, but for the first time in his career it won’t be on an NHL contract. The long-time pro has played on a one- or two-year two-way contract since his first full season in 2007-08, but that streak has come to an end. Smith has signed a one-way minor league contract with the San Antonio Rampage, the AHL announced today.
Smith, 33, has been a constant presence in the AHL for a long time, with at least one game played in eleven of the past twelve years, for a total of 593 games. During that time, he has also skated in 107 NHL games, including a career-high 54 games with the Toronto Maple Leafs in 2014-15. The University of New Hampshire alum signed with the New York Islanders to begin his pro career and has since signed contracts with the Anaheim Ducks, Tampa Bay Lightning, Pittsburgh Penguins, Toronto Maple Leafs, and most recently a two-year deal with the Nashville Predators. Smith has always had incredible production in the AHL – 438 total points and .75 points per game – but transitioning that offense has been a constant struggle; Smith has only 20 career NHL points and has never cracked double-digits in a single season.
As such, it is no surprise that the aging Smith is no longer considered a valued NHL asset. Although just last season he scored 43 points in 66 games in the AHL, he has only one scoreless NHL game on his resume over the past three years and has a history of being a non-factor at the top level. Nevertheless, he will still be a major boost for the Rampage in 2018-19. The former captain of both the Toronto Marlies and Milwaukee Admirals will play an important leadership role in San Antonio and his offensive experience and ability will help the team succeed as well as assist in the development of top young St. Louis Blues forward prospects like Jordan Kyrou, Klim Kostin, Erik Foley, and Nolan Stevens. Smith’s NHL days may be over, but he can still be a difference-maker in the AHL, where he has thrived for more than a decade.