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Green 'a little melancholy' about leaving Capitals

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Green 'a little melancholy' about leaving Capitals

For all intents and purposes, Mike Green’s 10-year roller coaster ride with the Capitals is over.

With six days remaining before the July 1 start of unrestricted free agency, Craig Oster, Green’s advisor since the time he was 15, said Thursday that Green will be leaving the Capitals and marketing himself to other NHL teams beginning today.

Green, who is at the end of a three-year contract that carried an estimated $6.1 million cap hit, was never given a concrete offer by the Capitals, Oster said.

“They haven’t really come out and said there’s no way they’re signing Mike Green, but they haven’t attempted to do so, either,” Oster said. “I think the understanding is that it doesn’t work. Based on everything right now, we’re proceeding with the full expectation that Mike will be a free agent on July 1.”

With 10 goals and 35 assists, Green is coming off his best offensive season in five years despite averaging his lowest ice time [19:08] since his first full season in Washington in 2006-07. In 575 games with the Caps, Green recorded 113 goals and 247 assists for 360 points. He netted 52 power-play goals and 20 game-winners, earning the nickname “Game Over.”

Green, 29, holds the franchise record for power-play goals by a defenseman [18 in 2008-09] and established an NHL record the same season by becoming the first defenseman to score in eight consecutive games. He was named an NHL First-Team All-Star in 2009 and 2010.  

Oster said he spoke with Green about ending his long career with the Capitals, who made him the 29th player selected in the 2004 NHL draft.   

“Like anything else, when you have a significant change in your life that is very different than what you had before it creates all sorts of feelings and emotions,” Oster said. “In one sense Mike is a little melancholy about moving on and yet in another way he’s excited by a new challenge and a new chapter in his life.

“The biggest thing I got from Mike was that he was disappointed that they never had the success as a team that Mike would have liked to have and they expected to have in Washington. He really enjoyed his time in D.C. We were talking about it and it’s almost like graduating and moving on to your next stage of life and I think that’s what Mike is prepared for.”

Green is expected to use the next few days to reach out to teams that might be interested in signing him next Wednesday. The Detroit Red Wings, Colorado Avalanche, Edmonton Oilers and Calgary Flames are teams believed to be interested.

Oster said Green, who could be seeking north of four years and $25 million, wants a bigger role with another NHL team than he had this season with the Capitals, who added Brooks Orpik and Matt Niskanen to a top four that included John Carlson and Karl Alzner.

“I think [the Capitals] realized it wasn’t going to fit no matter what it was, unless Mike was prepared to take something different than what he’s been used to doing,” Oster said. “I think Mike made it clear he played the role that was asked of him, but that certainly wasn’t his preferred role or what he was looking forward to doing. He wanted to play more minutes; he wanted to play in more situations; he wanted more responsibility, and I think that will be a real focus of discussions we have with other teams.”

[MORE CAPITALS: The 2015/16 Capitals schedule has been released] 

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Game 58: Capitals at Blackhawks Date, Time, How to Watch, Game Thread

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USA TODAY Sports

Game 58: Capitals at Blackhawks Date, Time, How to Watch, Game Thread

What: Washington Capitals vs. Chicago Blackhawks

Where: United Center, Chicago, Ill.

When: 8:30 p.m. ET

How to Watch: Capitals-Blackhawks will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington (Channel Finder)

Live Stream: You can watch the Capitals-Blackhawks game on NBC Sports Washington's live stream page.

You can also stream the game online with no cable TV subscription on fuboTV (try for free!).

WHEN IS THE CAPITALS-BLACKHAWKS GAME?

The Capitals (33-17-7) take on the Blackhawks (24-26-8) Saturday, February 17 at 8:30 p.m. ET in Chicago.

WHAT CHANNEL IS THE CAPITALS-BLACKHAWKS GAME ON?

The Capitals-Blackhawks game will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington. Coverage kicks off with Capitals FaceOff at 7:30 p.m. followed by Caps GameTime at 8:00 p.m. Stay with NBC Sports Washington for Caps Extra following the game, Caps Overtime at 11:30 p.m. and Caps in 30 at 12:30 a.m. for all your postgame coverage. (NBC Sports Washington channel Finder)

7:30 p.m. — Caps FaceOff
8:00 p.m. — Caps GameTime
8:30 p.m. — Capitals at Blackhawks
11:00 p.m. — Caps Extra
11:30 p.m. — Caps Overtime
12:30 a.m. — Caps in 30

WHAT ARE THE PROJECTED LINES FOR THE CAPITALS-BLACKHAWKS GAME?

Here are the projected lines for the Caps-Blackhawks game:

Forwards
Alex Ovechkin - Nicklas Backstrom - Tom Wilson
Brett Connolly - Evgeny Kuznetsov - T.J. Oshie
Andre Burakovsky - Lars Eller - Alex Chiasson
Chandler Stephenson - Jay Beagle - Devante Smith-Pelly

Defensemen
Christian Djoos - John Carlson
Dmitry Orlov - Matt Niskanen
Brooks Orpik - Madison Bowey

Braden Holtby starts with Philipp Grubauer as backup

Scratches: Jakub Vrana, Taylor Chorney

WHERE CAN I STREAM THE CAPITALS-BLACKHAWKS GAME?

The Capitals-Blackhawks game, as well as Caps GameTime and Caps Extra, is available to stream live here through NBC Sports Washington's live stream page and is available to authenticated NBC Sports Washington subscribers on desktops, tablets, mobile devices and connected TVs anywhere in the United States.

The game is also available to stream, along with all the pregame and postgame shows, on fuboTV (try for free).

CAPITALS-BLACKHAWKS OPEN THREAD

Use the comment section below to discuss the game action with other Capitals fans. 

For all the latest Caps coverage, follow Capitals Insider Tarik El-Bashir, Capitals correspondent JJ Regan and the NBC Sports Capitals account on Twitter. Be sure check out our Capitals page and NBC Sports Washington's Facebook page.

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NHL Awards tracker: How Malkin is helping Ovechkin's case for the Hart

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USA TODAY Sports

NHL Awards tracker: How Malkin is helping Ovechkin's case for the Hart

A week by week look at where the race for the major individual NHL awards stands and which Caps could be in contention.

The Pittsburgh Penguins have been red-hot as of late and so has Evgeni Malkin. In his last nine games, Malkin has tallied a whopping 11 goals and 17 points. His current run has some people talking about him contending for the Hart Trophy as the league's most valuable player.

But if you want to talk about Malkin for the Hart, you have to talk about Alex Ovechkin as well.

Malkin has 66 points this season, Ovechkin has 65. Even with his impressive goal run of late, Malkin still trails Ovechkin in the goal-scoring race 34-32. What's more, Ovechkin's Capitals still hold a three-point lead over Pittsburgh with two games in hand in the Metropolitan Division.

Granted all of this could change by next week. Perhaps Malkin will pass Ovechkin in goals or the Penguins will pass the Caps in the standings which will change the conversation. Until then, however, there's no way to push Malkin's Hart candidacy without thinking about Ovechkin. What he is doing at the age of 32 with a Capitals team in which no one really knew what to expect is more impressive than what the 31-year-old Malkin is doing with players like Phil Kessel and Sidney Crosby with the defending Stanley Cup champions.

Here are the Caps' hopefuls for awards this season:

John Carlson

In contention for: Norris

Carlson is third among all defensemen with 45 points, but his case goes beyond the numbers. With two rookies on the blue line and an injury to Matt Niskanen, the Caps have asked a lot of Carlson this season and he has always been up to the task.

SEE THIS WEEK'S 2018 NHL AWARDS TRACKER HERE

Braden Holtby

In contention for: Vezina

Holtby is on pace to be a 40-win goalie for the fourth consecutive season. He would be the first goalie in NHL history to accomplish that feat.

Alex Ovechkin

In contention for: Hart

If Malkin is a Hart candidate, so is Ovechkin who has done more with less in Washington this season.

Barry Trotz

In contention for: Jack Adams

The Caps still hold a three-point lead in the Metropolitan Division despite having two rookies on the blue line, dealing with more injuries than they have seen in years and down offensive years for some of its top players. Trotz deserves a lot of credit for that.

Check out who the top candidates are for the league's major individual awards in this week's 2018 NHL Awards Tracker!