The Washington Times - March 10, 2012, 03:01PM

BOSTON | Mike Green contends he didn’t try to make a dirty play on Brett Connolly on Thursday night, and though he expressed disappointment, the Washington Capitals defenseman understood why he was suspended three games by the NHL.

By no means did I intentionally do anything to harm anyone,” Green said. “It’s just unfortunate for myself.”

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When asked about replays that appeared to indicate Green lifted his left elbow up while skating toward Connolly, he took exception to that notion.

There was no elbow involved,” he said. “It was my shoulder, but I did make contact with his head, which is unacceptable.”

Tampa Bay Lightning coach Guy Boucher said it was clear to him that Green targeted Connolly’s head. Green explained that he was trying to stop Connolly from making a play while being checked by Dmitry Orlov.

I was just finishing my check and trying to separate him from the puck and pinch him off. It was just a hockey play, a hockey read that I made instantly,” Green said. “He kind of beat Orly, so then I went in there to pinch and close it off and make sure he couldn’t come to the net. And then obviously separate him from the puck. If Orly would’ve had him, I probably would’ve stayed in my position. But I had to go. It’s normal. I’d make that play 10 out of 10 times.”

Green is eligible to return Friday night at the Winnipeg Jets.