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Player Grades: Mike Green

Despite injury and age, the Detroit Red Wings highest paid defenseman continued to produce in 2017-18.

Detroit Red Wings v New York Islanders Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Player Info

Born: October 12, 1985
Birthplace: Calgary, AB, CAN
Height/Weight: 6’1” , 207 lb
Shoots: Right
Position: Defense
Contract: UFA in 2018-2019

Season Stats

Games Played: 66
Goals: eight
Assists: 25
PPP: 13 (one goal, 12 assists)

The Narrative

Mike Green was the highest paid blue-liner in Hockeytown in 2017-18, earning a cool $6,000,000 in the final year of his contract with the Detroit Red Wings. Despite being one of the top defensive candidates to be moved at the trade deadline, a season ending neck injury and subsequent surgery left Green to remain a Red Wing - at least for the time being.

However, if you ask the man himself, he’s very content to continue wearing the winged wheel:

With Ken Holland and company getting the green light to continue their rebuild in Detroit, whether Green re-ups with the club during the off-season remains to be seen. In regard to what he accomplished on the ice while healthy last season, Green was on obvious contributor/leader.

What He Did vs. Expectations

It’s no secret that when Green was brought to Detroit in 2015 that he was expected (and paid) to be an elite/veteran defenseman to help solidify the Red Wings’ back-end as the team continues to draft and develop future defensive players. Whether or not you agree with his price tag, Green was arguably the team’s best blue-liner in 2017-18.

Here’s a breakdown of Green’s stats among the rest of his teammates:

Among All DET Skaters

  • 3rd in Assists (25)
  • 6th in Points (33) tied with Nielsen & Athanasiou
  • 6th in P/GP (0.50)
  • 3rd in PPP (13) behind Zetterberg and Kronwall
  • 1st in TOI/GP (22:05)

Among All DET Defensemen

  • 2nd in Goals (8) only one less than Daley.
  • 1st in Assists (25)
  • 1st in Points (33)

Based purely on basic stats, it’s plain to see that Green was indeed the Wings best defender, at least on paper. Even with a lingering neck injury that he played through most of the 2017-18 season he was able to lead the entire team in minutes played per game while simultaneously leading Detroit’s blue-line in points.

To further strengthen the case of Green being the best defender in Hockeytown, he was the only Red Wing to be selected to the 2017-18 NHL All-Star Game.

Final Grade: A

Green’s game may not have been perfect last season, but neither was the Red Wings defense as a whole. As I stated earlier, he was the highest paid defender on the team and performed in a productive fashion. While the total output may not be worth the price, Green continued to be the veteran force the team needed him to be while the next generation of Red Wings’ blue-liners gain experience and continue to work their way up the professional ranks.


What grade would you give Mike Green for 2017-18?

This poll is closed

  • 24%
    (114 votes)
  • 51%
    (241 votes)
  • 17%
    (84 votes)
  • 4%
    (22 votes)
  • 1%
    (7 votes)
468 votes total Vote Now