ARLINGTON, Va. -- Based solely on statistics, Washington Capitals defenseman Mike Green is mired in a slump.
Through 24 games, the 28-year-old is in search of his first goal, the longest season-opening drought of his nine-year career.
Green has come up empty on all 62 shots on goal, the most taken by any player in the League without scoring this season. It's certainly not the norm for the player who has led all defensemen in goals in three of the past five seasons and whose 91 goals since 2007-08 rank second among NHL defensemen.
Coach Adam Oates could tell Green was perhaps forcing things in an attempt to get off the schneid, which was negatively affecting him in other areas.
"I think when a guy gets in a so-called slump, and for him, it was just because he hasn't got a goal," Oates said. "To me, first thing I said was, 'That's not a slump.' Goals will come. For me, it's his touches and his decisions. If you're pressing to get a goal, you're going to skate in opportunities you're not supposed to skate at and not wait for it at the right time. I felt like just his reads were a little off."