While there still is no time table for his return, Mike Green skated for the first time in a month today. NHL.com also reports that the Washington Capitals’ offensive defenseman is finally concussion symptom-free.
The report notes that it was an optional skate with only 11 players, with no contact. So it wasn’t the kind of full practice that would make it clear that Green is on the verge of a return.
Green said he would like to try to play in one of the Capitals’ final four remaining games, but the ultimate goal is to get ready for the playoffs. Green hasn’t played in an NHL contest since February 25th, when Derek Stepan landed an elbow on him in his first game back after missing time from taking a slap shot to the ear.
Overall, Green missed 22 out of Washington’s last 24 games and 16 in a row.
His improved health is coming at just about the right time, as Dennis Wideman is out for an unknown amount of time with what apparently is a “gruesome” injury while the team is also dealing with injuries to Mike Poti and John Erskine. Maybe their recent losses will hurt them in their quest to take the East’s top seed, but if Green can come back soon, their chances of having the kind of power play necessary to score easier playoff goals will improve substantially.
The question is: will he be able to shake off the rust quick enough if he cannot get a few reps in before the postseason begins?
Ken Appleby never got drafted, but his efforts during the New Jersey Devils’ training camp have earned him an entry-level contract, per the Bergen Record.
Although no team saw it fit to take him before the preseason, the 20-year-old is coming off of a very strong season. He had a 2.08 GAA and .924 save percentage in 50 games with the OHL’s Oshawa Generals. He went on to lead them to a Memorial Cup championship and earned the the Hap Emms Memorial Trophy as the tournament’s top goalie.
Appleby is the fifth goaltender the Devils have under contract after Cory Schneider, Keith Kinkaid, Scott Wedgewood, and Yann Danis. He’ll likely begin the season in the ECHL.
Alexandre Goulet and Jacob Sweeney also participated in the Devils’ training camp on an amateur tryout basis, but both of them have been released.
PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.
Some of the NHL’s top players discuss Connor McDavid‘s potential and the hype surrounding him. (Toronto Sun)
While we’re on the subject, Wayne Gretzky recalls what it was like for him going into the NHL and what’s in store for McDavid. (Edmonton Sun)
Sam Gagner is about to start a key season in his career. (Philadelphia Inquirer)
It’s time for the Washington Capitals to make some tough calls, particularly when it comes to Derek Roy. (CSN Mid-Atlantic)
With Raffi Torres hearing scheduled for today, here’s a look back at his suspension history. (San Jose Mercury News)
The Chicago Blackhawks have gotten their championship rings. (NHL.com)