He and his family could continue living in New Jersey, he found the general manager who tried his luck when he was an undrafted free agent in 2006 and, as a 14-year NHL veteran, Greene said he was able to easily adjust his game to the Islanders system.
However, entering a new locker room in mid-February was still strange.
“I’ve always been the type to welcome new guys,” said Greene, who has been the Devils’ captain for nearly five of his 13 and a half seasons in New Jersey, on a recent phone call. “Send texts and make sure the guys are comfortable. It was just weird to be on the opposite side this time. “
Greene, 37, is nearing the end of a five-year, $ 25 million contract he signed when the Islanders’ current president and chief executive officer Lou Lamoriello was the boss of New Jersey. Although unsure of the future, Greene said he plans to continue playing.
After only three weeks with the Islanders, before the season was halted due to the coronavirus pandemic, Greene thought he was “absolutely” the right candidate for the islands, but knows there are no guarantees. .
“I am open to anything, honestly,” he said. “They want me there, these are all the factors that come into play. I loved the three weeks I spent there, it’s an excellent organization, a good configuration, it’s a very nice neighborhood.
“But there are so many factors. Once this step is completed, we move on to the next step. “
Greene was brought in to fill a gaping hole in the Islanders’ defense due to Adam Pelech’s Achilles tendon injury on January 2.
But with reports that Pelech should be ready by next season’s training camp, it’s unclear whether the Islanders will be looking to retain Greene.
Greene said his new teammates were welcoming and that, combined with his own adaptability, the transition was smooth.
“The way I play my game, I feel like it’s easy to get on with it,” said Greene. “One of my best assets is my hockey sense, and being able to adjust and read games and situations, but when you get into a new system and stuff, most of the time, it’s just to react and play hockey. “
The Islanders, however, only went 2-5-4 after acquiring Greene, who had three assists in the 10 games he played before the break.