Oh boy. Mike Green. Is there any more polarizing figure to Caps fans? Is he too soft for the NHL? Is Muscle Milk any good?
The answer to all three questions is No. I think.
|22.2||Average time on ice per game|
|51.7%||Shot attempt percentage during 5v5|
|44.8%||Goal percentage during 5v5|
|6.9%||On-ice shooting percentage during 5v5|
|91.4%||On-ice saving percentage during 5v5|
Next to Alex Ovechkin, there may be no player on the Caps as divisive as Michael Green. Years ago, he was a Norris candidate and the team’s go-to offensive defenseman. But he hasn’t played a full season in six years (when he was 22), and his play without the puck has sent some observers into conniption fits.
I get it; I really do. I found Mike Green’s defense on odd-man rushes (which were way too common under Oates) to be embarrassing. When the Caps don’t have the puck, Green seems all too fallible. Green’s on-ice goal ratio was eight points below his on-ice shot-attempt percentage– I suspect there was more than just bad luck at play there.
The biggest problem, in my perspective, is not that Green’s style of play has changed, it’s just how that play has been apportioned. Green was wizardly conducting offense four seasons ago because the Caps had the puck so much more. Now that they’re outpossessed, the flaws that were always present in Green’s game seem way more obvious and distressing.
But Green was still the very best full-time (ish) player when it came to tilting the ice in the Caps’ favor this year, bucking to a large degree that Oates Effect that depressed everyone’s stats. And on the Caps’ truly electric power play (see, Adam? I can be nice.), Green was pivotal. Like, literally pivotal.
But with one year left on his contract, a history of injuries, and a dubious reputation as a defensive liability, is Green long for Washington? My guess: Yes. The Caps just don’t have the depth to let him go, and he– like Ovi– is the sort of player who may soar under an offensive renaissance.
Wow, we have a crap ton of Mike Green highlight GIFs. *Gasp* Is it possible that Green might be… jokes?!
I’ll keep this simple: Green’s contract is up next season. Do you think he’ll be back after that? Do you think he should? (Those are two separate questions, so gimme two answers. And show your work.)
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