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Here’s your daily Mike Green update

Dec 29, 2011, 2:47 PM EST

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Mike Green

Sounds like Washington defenseman Mike Green will return to action next week, thereby ending PHT’s award-winning coverage of his injured groin.

/pours liquor out

Green took part in his third consecutive practice on Thursday, a big step given he’s missed 21 games with a strained right groin muscle (and suffered a couple of recovery setbacks as well.) While optimistic about this latest development, Green was cautious in putting a timetable on his return.

“I’ll skate tomorrow again, see how I feel,” Green told the Washington Post. “You never know. Maybe I could play [this weekend]. But it looks like next week.

“I think we want to play this safe. Obviously been out for a long time and I want to get back, but I want to make sure I’m ready to play. No need to put myself in a dangerous situation if I’m not ready.”

The two-time Norris Trophy finalist would be a huge addition the Washington lineup. Green hasn’t been available since Dale Hunter took the coaching reigns Nov. 28 — even though he’d like his star defenseman back, the Caps bench boss is also preaching patience.

“He must be feeling pretty good,” Hunter said. “But it’s still a medical decision. Players always want to play, we’ve got to make the right decision for his injury.”

It’ll be interesting to see how the Caps blueline shakes out upon Green’s return. A noted offensive defenseman, Green will rejoin a group that’s already producing some serious offense — Dennis Wideman (23 points) and John Carlson (22) are both in the NHL’s top-10 in defensemen scoring while Karl Alzner is on pace to set a career high in points.

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