I've always been on the record as being totally against the "getting blown out so start a fight mentality". You suck, take it like a man, and go out and try harder next time.
But this is a new low, and of course it has to be Philly. Their management, fans and media have created this culture and mindset. Coach, GM and Emery all deserve fines and suspensions. The asshat journalist who made Emery 3rd star also deserves to be suspended, but as they self-righteously never cease to remind us, journalists believe themselves above criticism and beyond the law.
What doesn't help Smith is that he is unwilling or unable to play "his" game. When we drafted him, there were 3 things that he was known for
1) Big hits. Well, they stopped after he got suspended a couple of preseasons ago
2) Fighting. Well, that stopped after Babs publically chewed him out for dropping the gloves and leaving them a defenceman short.
3) Offence. Well, he gets no PP time as he's stuck behind Kronwall, Alfie, Kindl and the inexplicalble Sammy.
Whilst watching him handle the puck in his own zone like its a hand grenade is unbearably painful, I refuse to believe that he lacks the skill to be an NHL defenceman - as other posters have pointed out I believe the problem is between his ears. Right now he's *thinking* when the puck is near him, but an NHL defenceman doesn't have time to think, it all has to be instinctive. Ericsson was exactly the same up until 18 months ago - you could almost see the gears whirring in his brain as he tried to figure out what he was supposed to do next. Thankfully, it eventually clicked and he is rock solid these days.
It also doesn't help Smith that he's stuck with Quincey who is equally fond of bobbling the puck and/or passing it his skates.
Time, a spot on the 2nd PP unit, and a solid veteran D-man alongside him are what Smith needs, as hard as the growing pains may be.