Skip to content

Casey DeSmith injured, Arturs Silovs to start Game 4 for Canucks

With Thatcher Demko already out, the Vancouver Canucks have suffered another injury to a goaltender, with Casey DeSmith expected to miss Game 4 against the Nashville Predators.
Arturs Silovs has been called upon to start Game 4 with both Thatcher Demko and Casey DeSmith injured.

This is starting to get absurd.

According to multiple reports, Casey DeSmith has suffered an injury and is not available for the Vancouver Canucks in Game 4.

With Thatcher Demko already out with a serious knee injury, this forces the Canucks to turn to their third-string goaltender, rookie Arturs Silovs, with his Abbotsford Canucks backup, Nikita Tolopilo, behind him.

While DeSmith was hit behind the net in Game 3 by Michael McCarron, this injury is unrelated to that collision, according to ChekTV's Rick Dhaliwal. McCarron received a $2000 fine for goaltender interference.

DeSmith was outstanding in Game 3 against the Nashville Predators, making 30 saves on 31 shots, coming three minutes short of the shutout. 

According to The Fourth Period's Irfaan Gaffar, DeSmith could return for Game 5, as the injury is not a major one.

In fact, even though DeSmith won't be in the Canucks' lineup on Sunday, he will be the Canucks' emergency backup goaltender, aka. EBUG, for the game. That suggests the injury is a minor one.

That's good news for the Canucks but it still means the Canucks will be using three different goaltenders in the space of four playoff games. 

Fortunately, the 23-year-old Silovs has plenty of experience in high-pressure games. Silovs has made two appearances at the World Hockey Championship with his home country of Latvia, with a combined .929 save percentage across 14 games. That includes a fantastic four-game run after stepping in for the struggling Elvis Merzlikins in 2022.

Last year, Silovs stepped into the net five minutes into the first game of the tournament and played every game after that. He carried his team to the bronze medal — Latvia's first medal in IIHF history. He was named the tournament MVP for his efforts.

"He beat me at Worlds this year, he stood on his head and took a medal from us," said Conor Garland, who faced Silovs in the bronze medal game for Team USA.

The Canucks might not need Silovs to carry them but will be looking for him to help them earn at least one win so that DeSmith can rest up and get back in the net.