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Oates: Mike Green’s ‘an enigma’

Apr 15, 2014, 9:49 AM EDT

Dallas Stars v Washington Capitals Getty Images

There was a time when Mike Green was the league’s top scoring blueliner, but questions about his defensive play plagued him. Now he’s not nearly as productive offensively and the concerns about his work without the puck haven’t gone away.

“He’s an enigma,” Capitals coach Adam Oates told CSN Washington. “Greenie’s that guy that down the stretch last year had that month that was fantastic. People want that [scoring] every night from him and I’m trying to fight him back.”

Oates doesn’t want to see Green cheating defensively to try and relive his former glory from a points perspective, but he also needs to see the 28-year-old defenseman be more consistent.

Green admitted that it was a frustrating season at times, but he pointed to the fact that he kept switching defensive partners as one of the causes for his struggles. It didn’t sound like Oates completely bought that reasoning though.

“He’s had a lot of partners, but he’s also supposed to be the guiding light,” Oates said. “He’s the veteran. He’s the guy we count on. He’s supposed to take care of them, not the other way around.”

With only one season left on Green’s three-year, $18.25 million contract, he might be one of the guys the Capitals shop around as they attempt to shake things up after missing the playoffs. Of course, Oates’ future with the team is unclear too.

  1. kyzslew77 - Apr 15, 2014 at 10:13 AM

    Wait a minute, he’s Canadian! Canadians aren’t allowed to be enigmatic! That’s a title reserved for Russians, and in extreme circumstances, other European players.

    While we’re at it OVI IS SELFISH STRIP HIM OF THE “C” THAT’S THE PROBLEM WITH THIS TEAM EXCEPT FOR ALL THE OTHER DOZENS OF PROBLEMS HERPA DERP DERP DERP

    • kyzslew77 - Apr 15, 2014 at 12:00 PM

      Why am I getting thumbs downed? I thought the whole point of Caps posts on PHT was so everyone could jump into the comments and agree that Selfishvechkin is Russian, and selfish, and not a leader, and only cares about his own stats, and not Canadian, and therefore a selfish non-leader who shouldn’t be captain. Maybe that changed in the last 24 hours and I missed the memo.

  2. jaguar0413 - Apr 15, 2014 at 10:21 AM

    Wow how refreshing, Oates calls out another player instead of taking responsibility as coach. Maybe Green isn’t doing as well offensively because the coaches are forcing him to pass the puck as soon as he gets it instead of carrying it out of the zone like he did when he was successful.

    No it’s probably that he’s enigmatic. That’s it.

  3. jeremyroenickdanceparty - Apr 15, 2014 at 10:24 AM

    Mike Green is lazy. But not smart lazy like Suter who doesn’t skate as much because he knows where the puck is going to be.

  4. gbart22 - Apr 15, 2014 at 10:44 AM

    If a player works better with a partner and in particular works better with one partner isn’t it the coaches job to put that player in the best possible situation to succeed? It never makes any sense to me when coaches want to turn players into something they may not be. Green can score but like with karlsson that comes with not the worlds greatest defensive play but you can trade that off by putting him with a good stay at home type defenseman. This doesn’t seem like rocket science.

  5. drewsylvania - Apr 15, 2014 at 10:47 AM

    Seemingly everything out of Oates’ mouth is something adverse about his players.

  6. dipthatchip - Apr 15, 2014 at 10:50 AM

    is Oates the next one to request a trade from WSH? Jesus ^$*#ing christ, you’re the coach. Shut your mouth or use discretion.

  7. esracerx46 - Apr 15, 2014 at 10:58 AM

    Didn’t Boudreau once say about Semin “He’s an enigma wrapped in something, wrapped in something else.”

    Lots of enigmas in Washington apparently.

    • patthehockeyfan - Apr 15, 2014 at 11:18 AM

      It was Ovechkin whom Oates described as an enigma a week or two ago.

      And, it was Winston Churchill who said, “I cannot forecast to you the action of Russia. It is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma; but perhaps there is a key. That key is Russian national interest.”

      Somebody please buy Oates a Thesaurus so he can learn a new word!

      • patthehockeyfan - Apr 15, 2014 at 11:20 AM

        P.S. You were right. Boudreau also said about Semin: ““There’s a saying about Alex. He’s an enigma wrapped in something, wrapped in something else.”

        How these coaches borrow from one another!

    • barkar942 - Apr 15, 2014 at 11:20 AM

      Enigmatism- adjective \ˌe nig-ˈma-tik also ˌē nig-\. : full of mystery and difficult to understand. see Ovechkin
      Ovechkin- see Founder of Enigmatism- adjective \ˌe nig-ˈma-tik also ˌē nig-\. : founder of being full of mystery and difficult to understand.

  8. barkar942 - Apr 15, 2014 at 11:21 AM

    Personally, I equate Mike Green and Michael DelZotto in the same enigmatic way.

  9. flash8910 - Apr 15, 2014 at 12:15 PM

    Green come to Anaheim. Play for Bruce. Maybe you can shine again.

  10. cfos00 - Apr 15, 2014 at 12:52 PM

    You think he’s an enigma, eh? Here, let me solve that mystery for you. He’s a good offensive player who doesn’t defend well and gets himself out of position all the time, and has been his entire career. There. Mystery solved. Didn’t need Scooby for that one.

    • govtminion - Apr 15, 2014 at 1:10 PM

      Really want a head-scratcher? No one cared a bit back when this player was called ‘Pavel Bure’, but Ovechkin gets lit on fire for it.

      • dirt2013 - Apr 15, 2014 at 1:33 PM

        Maybe but I believe 00 was talking about Green.

    • esracerx46 - Apr 15, 2014 at 5:25 PM

      Sounds like a winger..

  11. nj666 - Apr 15, 2014 at 2:41 PM

  12. shoobiedoobin - Apr 15, 2014 at 6:53 PM

    C-U-L-T-U-R-E

    C-H-A-N-G-E

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