Skip to content

Columnist: Mike Green is ‘destined to be traded’ by Caps

Jul 8, 2014, 12:10 PM EDT

Mike Green Getty Images

The Detroit Red Wings tried their best to land a right-handed shot defenseman in free agency. They were hot after Dan Boyle, Matt Niskanen, and Anton Stralman and saw them all decide to sign elsewhere.

Now the Wings are sniffing around on the trade market to find someone capable of playing big minutes from the right side and help bolster their blue line. Names like Tyler Myers and Cody Franson have come up, but Ansar Khan of Mlive.com has an idea of who they should pursue: Washington’s Mike Green.

Khan says with the Caps recent additions of Niskanen and Brooks Orpik, Green is “destined to be traded.” Khan adds that the “Capitals don’t need” Green. Tell us more, Ansar.

Washington has eight defensemen on one-way contracts, one more than they need. Niskanen essentially replaces Green on the top power-play unit. The Capitals have just 12 forwards; they need one more and have only $1.1 million of cap space. Unloading Green would give them flexibility.

That’s nice in theory, but let’s look at what Green provided the Capitals last season. He had nine goals and 38 points in 70 games and averaged over 22 minutes per game of ice time. Add in that he was also a possession monster for the Caps and you’ve got a very valuable player.

Yes, Green is headed into the final year of his contract with the team with a cap hit of over $6 million, but to think the Caps would easily part with him is foolish. If Detroit wants him, they’d have to be prepared to part with a couple of their hot prospect forwards.

  1. tmoore4075 - Jul 8, 2014 at 12:16 PM

    He’ll still cost something, especially in conference where the Caps could be fighting the Wings for the wild card spots. He might be cheaper than a Yandle or Myers but not by much. If this was closing in on the trade deadline and the Caps were out of it I’d say yeah, he’d be cheap but they won’t give him away.

  2. pjblake2redwings - Jul 8, 2014 at 12:28 PM

    Not worth it to part with Nyquist, Tatar or Mantha. I would be ok with Anderrson and Jurco for Green. we already lost a young stud of Calle Jarnkrok to the Preds for 20 games with Legwand.. Not willing to do that again since Green only has 1 yr left

    • tmoore4075 - Jul 8, 2014 at 12:36 PM

      Agree. From all accounts Nyquist and Mantha are untouchable, as it should be. I wouldn’t part with Tatar for Green either.

    • porkchopexpress1969 - Jul 8, 2014 at 12:54 PM

      No way on Jurco. Tartar for sure, smallish. Jurco at least has size and skill. Keeping Mantha, Jurco and Nyquist are keepers. Tartar(who I like a lot) can be moved if needed.

      • rbbbaron - Jul 8, 2014 at 1:10 PM

        Tatar, who was generating most of the chances for the Kids line and had some of the best advanced stats on the team last year to back it up, for a likely rental? The thought terrifies me.

  3. islesjb - Jul 8, 2014 at 1:05 PM

    Not sure what who exactly it would take to get it done but I’m sure they’ll be hearing from the Isles on Green. Defense needs to be shored up and the Isles have some solid prospects they could part with; I’m sure they’d be willing to throw in Josh Bailey to top it off.

    • bcisleman - Jul 8, 2014 at 3:37 PM

      Snow surely will kick the tires, but I’m guessing WAS will want now Fs and may be shy about trading Green to a division rival. Also, Snow would surely want a re-signing as condition of trade before he parts with serious assets.

  4. rbbbaron - Jul 8, 2014 at 1:06 PM

    Wishful thinking. One of great things about Holland re-upping Quincey is that now if Holland wants to trade for a righty, he’ll have to move on the blueliners (or pay someone a lot of money to sit around and twiddle their thumbs, which I’m sure the Ilitch family will love). It’s not going to be Kronwall or Ericsson or Quincey (who the hell would take him for that cap hit?). Holland should/will be dragged out in the street and shot if he moves DeKeyser. That leaves Kindl and Smith.

    Kindl has a couple more seasons @ 2.4 after this one left on his contract; attractive for someone who’s not interested in a rental but the question is whether anyone else really thinks Kindl, a 5/6 on most depth charts, is worth 2.4mil. Most Wings fans would be content to see Kindl moved, but too bad he’s a lefty (there’s no shortage) and the Caps don’t want him so Holland would have to find 3rd team if the goal is to get Green (when is the last time you’ve seen Holland orchestrate a 3-team deal?)

    Smith is more likely to be at the center of any potential swap as his cap hit is lighter and he’s an RFA after this season. He’s shown more potential and plays a more noticeable game that other GMs are surely familiar with.

    The problem is, again going back to Holland signing Quincey, would the Wings even have cap space to accommodate Green? As it stands there’s only 9.5mil to service DeKeyser and Tatar (who are due for significant raises), Cleary (for better or worse) and Alfredsson. Maybe one of the unintended effects of signing Quincey is that of sending a negative signal to Alfredsson that he’d might as well just call it a career (because the chances of competing for a cup in Detroit sure as hell didn’t just get better). That’d leave some space. Or having Weiss miss most of the season with a persistent injury, which isn’t really something you can plan for unfortunately (again, the genius of that Weiss contract).
    So yeah, we’re all allowed to dream. Thanks again Kenny.

    • pjblake2redwings - Jul 8, 2014 at 1:36 PM

      They are not resigning Cleary.. He will get a front office gig and I do not see Alfie coming back. I think he is going to retire

      • porkchopexpress1969 - Jul 8, 2014 at 1:46 PM

        I tend to agree with you. Hopefully Cleary can just get a position on the office, and Alfie… I love him, but his back issues are a major set back. I thought Alfie was going to have the same surgery that Z had?

      • rbbbaron - Jul 8, 2014 at 2:09 PM

        “They are not resigning Cleary” Just like they weren’t resigning Quincey? Last I heard Cleary still wants to play and Holland gave him his word. If Holland effectively forces him to retire, then Holland loses credibility (does he still have it?). Hopefully Alfredsson doesn’t see himself coming back, but considering that the roster is still (for 3 years now) lacking a righty on the blueline, there’s a need for him on the PP. This is all of Holland’s doing.

    • pwshrugged - Jul 8, 2014 at 5:35 PM

      I’m stunned at the negativity of some fans simply because the Wings didn’t land a right-handed defenseman, which suddenly is the missing piece to the Stanley Cup puzzle. So, because of this one minor hole in the roster, we’ll slam Ken Holland, whose roster management and youth development has helped bring several Cups and an endless playoff run to the city.

      Please. Get over it. The Wings can’t win every year, and have to rebuild on occasion. The fact that our “rebuilding” years are still promising playoff years is something to be grateful for. I’m sure there are at least 20 teams, if not more, who would love to be in the position the Wings are in right now, with very few roster holes and lots of talented young players aside veteran stars.

      The idea that Matt Niskanen, Dan Boyle, or Mike Green somehow make or break the 2014-15 Red Wings campaign is absolutely ludicrous. We might not win a Cup this coming season, but we’ll make the playoffs and the roster will continue to gel and mature and improve, all the while maintaining a very manageable salary cap for when/if the right situation comes up and for retaining said young talent.

      If you ask me, the Red Wings are in the best all-around position they’ve been in from a salary and personnel standpoint probably since the salary cap was implemented. Sure, they lack a Nick Lidstrom now, but they’ve gone from one of the most capped-out teams to having a very comfortable cap cushion, and they’ve gone from one of the oldest teams to one of the youngest. This is a team with considerable upside and very few holes on the roster. I really don’t know what fans expect… the kids will continue to mature, and the future – which really isn’t bleak to begin with – will continue to brighten.

      • rbbbaron - Jul 8, 2014 at 5:48 PM

        “a right-handed defenseman, which suddenly is the missing piece to the Stanley Cup puzzle.”
        Straw man.

      • pwshrugged - Jul 8, 2014 at 10:42 PM

        I fail to see the crisis.

        Last year, with a worse salary cap situation, weighed down by several worthless veteran contracts, the Red Wings were a playoff team. They accomplished this despite the second-most man-games lost to injury, and with a wide array of rookies playing at almost every position. Some of those rookies showed real promise; legit superstars-of-the-future promise, much as Datsyuk and Zetterberg did 11-13 years ago. That roster made the playoffs. They squeaked in, yes, but they made it.

        Next season, we will largely return that same roster. A roster that will be a bit more mature, a bit more seasoned, and less burdened by bad contracts. There’s no reason to assume the Wings won’t be legitimate playoff contenders, and the safe bet is on them making the playoffs again, simply based on the lack of change and the promise of growth.

        Now, I won’t argue that they don’t look set for a Cup run. But that’s okay; I don’t expect a Cup every year (but I certainly hope for it!). But it’s a roster that seems more likely to surprise than disappoint, and they should be fun to watch again. I fail to see some sign of drastic decline. To me, everything’s looking pretty good.

        For now, we can agree to disagree, yes, and let next season’s results be the ultimate arbiter of truth? I’ll see you in the playoffs.

  5. tmoore4075 - Jul 8, 2014 at 1:59 PM

    Another article here in Detroit says the Wings really are in on Green and hope to get something done quick so his price doesn’t go up. The Quincey deal doesn’t hurt them, the Kindl one does. Maybe they can move but I dunno. Lets say they don’t sign Q but are able to get Green. You’d rather have Kindl out there than Quincey? I’m not so sure about that.

    Cleary is probably not making the team. If he’s offered a contract it’ll be like Maltby a few years ago. A two-way/PTO type deal. He’d have to have a great camp to make the roster. If he does, great come on back, if not you go to GR or you retire.

    We’ll find out on Alfie next month. I think he’s back but that’s me. Glad he’s taking his time regardless though.

    • rbbbaron - Jul 8, 2014 at 2:20 PM

      “You’d rather have Kindl out there than Quincey? I’m not so sure about that.”
      You’re looking at it the wrong way. It’s not a question of Kindl or Quincey, it’s a question Kindl AND Quincey. Kindl was already signed and was going to be out there anyways; Quincey wasn’t. I would’ve been absolutely satisfied to have had no one signed rather than Quincey @ 4.25mil for the next two years. Not only does that eat up cap space which could’ve been used for far better purposes, but having Quincey stay does nothing but crowd out the younger guys from getting experience. If things stay the way Holland has them now, then we can can look forward to seeing Sproul, Marchenko, and/or Ouellet…in two years if we’re lucky.

      • tmoore4075 - Jul 8, 2014 at 3:07 PM

        Are you saying that because of Quincey we won’t see the young kids for two years and they, if he wasn’t signed, they’d up here sooner? I’m just clarifying that’s what you are saying with that last sentence because all the reports a few weeks ago were saying that’s what the Wings were really looking for, a stop-gap until the kids are ready. That’s why Boyle was their #1 target. They wanted him here for 2 years while the kids played in GR. So IF that’s what you are getting at, that the Quincey signing is robbing Sproul and the rest from playing, that’s what the Wings were planning all along. Now you can argue that the kids should be playing over Quincey but that’s a entirely different argument, but I won’t question the Wings when it comes to development because they’ve done a good job of that so far. so if they feel the young D isn’t ready yet I’ll believe them. But whether it was Quincey, Boyle or Ehrhoff, the plan was to not have those kids here for 2 more years anyway.

        $4.25 mil could have used for better purposes…what? Signing Engelland for $3mil per year? Not arguing for the signing, I don’t know what the thought process was for signing Quincey but his signing is not preventing them from doing anything. There is nothing out there, that they need, to sign. If they don’t sign him, most likely that money is just sitting there. Now you can say that’s a better investment maybe, but again, not preventing anything.

        That’s a lot of crap to sift though, so I’ll just summarize: If you think Quincey was a bad signing for his playing ability, he was overpaid or both, fine, just say it. But it’s not stopping them from signing anyone, trading for anyone, doesn’t change anything in regards to what they do with Kindl (wanted to trade him most likely anyways) and doesn’t prevent the kids from playing here because they didn’t want any of them here next year anyways.

      • rbbbaron - Jul 8, 2014 at 4:23 PM

        2 years is the best case scenario for those kids, or rather one of them, to even get a sniff of full-time duty. As it is, Kronwall, Ericsson, Kindl, and soon likely DeKeyser and Smith will all be signed through at least 2017. In 2 years Lashoff will be due for a new deal and that’s when Holland can again signal to Quincey that we’re looking elsewhere…
        The point is this: if you’re going to deprive the younger guys of the opportunity to come up and get experience, then do it smartly by making sure that’s a right-handed guy who makes things easier out on the ice and keeps Babcock happy. Don’t do it by paying more for the status quo– 7 lefties! So for the next 2 years, if Holland wants to improve the blueline by getting a righty into the lineup, HE’LL BE DEALING FROM A POSITION OF WEAKNESS because he’ll have to move one of the blueliners we’ve currently got or just be content paying someone a lot of money to sit in the press box or play in GR. That’s crap management.

        “There is nothing out there, that they need, to sign.”
        While Holland was trying to save face in the press a few days ago, he was talking about how there are some interesting options that he’s exploring for short-term deals (Salo was mentioned). That Holland is still sniffing around suggests that he still feels there’s a need, or was that pure lip service?

        “If they don’t sign him, most likely that money is just sitting there.” Lol, sure whatever you want to believe.

        There were, and still are, other and better options. It would’ve made more sense to throw that money at Robidas, who went for a 3mil cap hit (and by most accounts Holland would’ve gladly signed had he not been to busy swinging and missing at Boyle, Niskanen, and Stralman). For that 4.25mil freakin Derek Morris (still unsigned) would’ve been a better signing than Quincey. Chicago needs to make a move to get under the cap– why not kick the tires on Rozsival? The guy was scratched for half the season, he’d probably be willing to waive NMC to go somewhere where he’d be regularly in the lineup and can probably be had for a late-middle round pick. I’d sooner send a pick to WAS to have Steve Oleksy on that bottom pairing than Quincey @ 4.25mil for the next 2 years. There were hundreds of other options, most of which are better than having Quincey for 4.25mil for the next 2 years and nearly all of which Holland didn’t explore.

        “But it’s not stopping them from signing anyone, trading for anyone, doesn’t change anything in regards to what they do with Kindl (wanted to trade him most likely anyways) and doesn’t prevent the kids from playing here because they didn’t want any of them here next year anyways.”
        Wrong, wrong, wrong and wrong. You’re ignoring the constraints and equilibrium effects.

  6. valoisvipers - Jul 8, 2014 at 2:22 PM

    I don`t see Detroit trading for Green. He is not Detroit`s type of player what so ever. Lousy on defense and a shadow of himself offensively. He has had 2 great years 2009+2010 other than those he has been horrendous and rarely healthy. Buyer beware.

  7. jpelle82 - Jul 8, 2014 at 2:29 PM

    he’s gonna go home to Calgary for a bag of pucks in a salary dump…insiders have said he’s wanted out for years.

    • valoisvipers - Jul 8, 2014 at 2:44 PM

      jpelle82 You hit the nail on the head.Well said and most likely what will happen.

      • ravenscaps48 - Jul 8, 2014 at 3:22 PM

        I’m not a fan of his, never was. He is a winger playing defense. Get him out for anything!

  8. rsl22 - Jul 8, 2014 at 2:48 PM

    He would be gone already if he was going to be traded, and the caps don’t have a replacement for him. Calling Erskine or Hillen NHL-caliber defenders is laughable. The new GM wanted to bolster the defense, and taking Green out of the lineup only hurts.

    As was mentioned above, Green is the best possession player on the team, and there’s no way you get fair value for him. His numbers are down, but he was playing with fringe NHL players. Give him a strong partner and he’s a major asset that can’t be replaced by a prospect.

    • jpelle82 - Jul 8, 2014 at 3:21 PM

      hillen is a decent 3rd pair guy, he just cant stay healthy. trotz knows him from his short stint in Nashville…coincidentally one of hillen’s best seasons was in trotz system getting 3rd pair minutes.

  9. flyeredup202 - Jul 8, 2014 at 3:02 PM

    I would love to see the flyers make a deal for him, throw vinny at the caps and a prospect like Laughton or Cousins and bring him to Philly…. would it happen not at all but I can dream

    • jpelle82 - Jul 8, 2014 at 3:23 PM

      I actually like the idea of lecavalier since the caps need a 2c but I wouldn’t give anything more for green and his price tag…

      • flyeredup202 - Jul 8, 2014 at 3:34 PM

        Id do Green straight up for Vinny….. No picks but again Im dreaming

      • phillyphanatic77 - Jul 8, 2014 at 3:37 PM

        If it was Lecavalier going in a potential deal that’d be great, but I think Holmgren would be much more likely to make a move like this rather than Hextall. The Flyers are already a few million over the cap and Green makes more than Vinny so they’d most likely have to throw in another roster player to make it work. I don’t want Raffl or Schenn going in a deal so that doesn’t leave much and Laughton (who I want to keep, especially if it’s a rental) isn’t assured a roster spot so it wouldn’t clear the necessary money.

        As much as I’d like to add a puck moving defenseman who shoots right I just don’t think it’s a plausible move. Hextall has made it pretty clear that he wants to build from within, stop relying on other organizations to develop our defenders, and clear cap space… adding Mike Green doesn’t fit that philosophy. Plus, it’s a division rival which makes it an even tougher decision.

      • jpelle82 - Jul 8, 2014 at 4:07 PM

        pipe dream for all fans involved

    • easez1 - Jul 8, 2014 at 3:38 PM

      There is no way Hexy makes a stupid move like getting Green, his vision for the Flyers is players with accountability and a strong two way game, Green has neither.

  10. pj608 - Jul 8, 2014 at 4:50 PM

    Where would Green go? He isn’t a bad player…. I mean you all talk up PK Subban and then this guy is a scrub? Washington’s system is just effed if you ask me. Everyone there only has one thing in mind… ”

    “how many goals can we get? I cant let Ovechkin have all the glory but no one wants to play the other end of the ice.”

    I dont care for Washington but thats my analysis and i don’t think there is a single one person to point the finger at. Its everyone. Put him in another system with players that back check and help in the defensive zone and he will flourish.

    • pj608 - Jul 8, 2014 at 8:03 PM

      Obviously you guys either dont watch Washington play or are fans that just like to point fingers….

  11. passont - Jul 8, 2014 at 5:26 PM

    Detroit won’t really go after Green. Kenny Holland screwed up signing Quincey and now he’s stuck. He can’t give away any of the kids, ticket sales would plummet in protest, and he already has spent all the money he can. He wants Alfredsson for one more year, but he still has to sign DeKeyser and Tatar which leaves him maybe $1M or $2M. Even getting rid of Kindl doesn’t give him enough money, and nobody wants Kindl for $2.4M. The Wings have 3 really good prospect D-men who are right-handed, and one of them is pretty good on the PP but will need a season or two of NHL experience before developing fully. What we got, is what we’re gonna have. Green doesn’t fit Detroit’s system anyway. If Holland goes after Green, then he deserves all the crap he’s gonna get.

  12. watermelon1 - Jul 8, 2014 at 6:37 PM

    Look at numbers all you want, but green was NOT a reason they had good possession. If anything, it was his ice-mates not passing it to green because they knew he’d make the wrong decision with the puck.

    If Caps get a decent offer, they BETTER trade him. They made the mistake of not doing so about 6 years ago when he was first overhyped for being the top scoring “defenseman.”

    His first and foremost duty is to STOP other team from having open shots on his goalie. And he might be the worst in the league at that. Getting rid of him is long overdue.

    • pj608 - Jul 8, 2014 at 8:05 PM

      What would you want in return for Washington? A center since Grabovski left or another D man? I would think C since half the free agency money was spent by the Caps on Defense.

  13. capsrockva - Jul 8, 2014 at 8:39 PM

    Often injured I say trade him for what you can get

  14. cliffatola - Jul 9, 2014 at 12:16 AM

    As a Wings fan who lives in the DC area, please stop speculating on this. The Wings have a little over 9m in cap space right now and still have Tatar and DeKeyser to re-sign. Mike Green is a drunk and I hope I never see him in a Detroit uniform.

  15. garrison1981 - Jul 9, 2014 at 1:36 AM

    To the guy that said Tatar is expendable you obviously didn’t watch many games last year. He was our spark plug! If he was scoring gritty hard earned goals he was passing them or kicking the puck to them. He and Nyquist are equally important to our future! Jurco disappears at times. Still think he’ll get better overall game! Anderson Sheehan however could be moved!

  16. tmoore4075 - Jul 9, 2014 at 10:20 AM

    Reports today say what is holding up a potential Myers deal is they want Mantha…not gonna happen boys, but nice try. If I have to deal with the same D as last year to have Mantha in the future, I take that.

  17. skoivu10 - Jul 9, 2014 at 5:17 PM

    He has a no trade clause, but I’d like to see ericsson to Wash for Green. It really would help out both teams. Since Wash has Nisk and Orpik, they need a good actual defender. Det needs a right handed point shot.

Sign up for Fantasy hockey

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. J. Quick (1251)
  2. C. Giroux (1040)
  3. N. Horton (1028)
  4. A. Ovechkin (957)
  5. B. Bishop (931)