Caps defenseman Mike Green’s All-Star game experience just got a little more interesting. The 25-year-old is making his first All-Star appearance and will do so as an alternate captain for Team Staal. Green and Vancouver’s Ryan Kessler will serve with Carolina Hurricanes center Eric Staal, who captains his own team as the star player from the host city and will pick the rest of his roster during a player draft next Friday in Raleigh. Detroit defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom captains the opposition.
The NHL and the NHLPA selected Green in a joint decision. He and Kessler will help Staal select the roster and the lineup for both Saturday’s SuperSkills competition and Sunday’s game. Chicago’s Patrick Kane and Tampa Bay’s Martin St. Louis are the alternate captains for Team Lidstrom.
Green is a two-time first-team All-NHL selection and a two-time Norris Trophy runner-up. He ranks fourth in the NHL in ice time. He’s led all NHL defenseman in goals and points each of the last two seasons. Looking forward to seeing how he works with Staal, a division rival he faces six times a year in often-testy matchups.
Green and the Caps are in Toronto tonight to play the Maple Leafs. The offense is still struggling. Washington has put up more than three goals just twice in the last 22 games and not at all since Dec. 21. Yet they are picking up points at a steady clip. The Caps are now 8-2-4 since snapping an eight-game losing streak last month. Not bad taking 20 standings points out of a possible 28. That’s a 117-point pace.
“It’s been up and down, not working every night,” Green said. “But playing consistently on the same page. Our whole focus on the course of the season is to find our balance between offense and defense and play a complete game. We’re still working on it, but it’s coming together.”
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