Tom Wilson #43 of the Washington Capitals takes a roughing penalty in the course of the second interval towards Artemi Panarin #10 of the New York Rangers at Madison Sq. Backyard
Enforcer, goon, agitator, no matter you’d prefer to name it, Washington Capitals ahead Tom Wilson was at it once more on Tuesday night time — this time on the expense of the New York Rangers.
In the course of the second interval of a 6-3 loss, Rangers ahead Pavel Buchnevich crashed the web of Capitals goalie Vitek Vanicek with a scoring likelihood out there proper on the doorstep. After he fell to the ice stomach-first, Wilson administered a gloved punch to the again of an unsuspecting Buchnevich’s head.
An ensuing scrum noticed Ryan Strome pull Wilson off Buchnevich earlier than Rangers celebrity ahead Artemi Panarin jumped on the Capitals’ troublemaker to attempt to hold him from punching Strome.
Wilson proceeded to tug Panarin’s helmet off earlier than slamming him to the ice — a harmful act contemplating Panarin’s head was uncovered.
Wilson was slapped with a double-minor penalty for roughing and a 10-minute misconduct, although he was in a position to return the place he scored his thirteenth aim of the season.
In the meantime, Panarin was penalized two minutes for roughing and wouldn’t return to the sport for what was described as a lower-body damage.
With three video games to play, TSN’s Elliotte Friedman reported that “preliminary” expectations are that Panarin gained’t play out the schedule with the Rangers eradicated from playoff competition.
It leaves the Rangers to sift by way of the rubble of one more disgraceful show from Wilson.
“All of us noticed it. There are traces that may’t be crossed on this sport,” Rangers head coach David Quinn mentioned. “There’s simply zero respect for the sport typically. You bought one of many star gamers on this league now that might have gotten critically, critically harm in that incident. You all noticed what occurred, and it occurs time and time once more with him. Completely pointless.”
“I determine it is best to have extra respect for the sport and for the gamers,” Rangers middle Mika Zibanejad mentioned. “It’s simply horrible. Zero respect. I don’t know why I’m stunned. It’s simply horrible.”
Regardless of wreckless and harmful play that has change into commonplace, Wilson continues to be afforded the chance to play within the NHL — a notion that has loads of followers round North America up in arms.
Tom Wilson has been suspended 5 occasions in his profession, together with a seven-game ban this yr for an unlawful and harmful physique examine to the top of Boston Bruins defenseman Brandon Carlo.
When requested how the league ought to deal with this newest calamity, Quinn didn’t have any solutions.
“The league’s been coping with this for some time,” he mentioned. “That’s a solution for someone else.”
In accordance with the league’s division of participant security, this by some means wasn’t grounds for a sixth suspension. As an alternative, he was fined $5,000 — simply $3,000 greater than New York Islanders star middle Mathew Barzal’s tab when he was illegally hooked and fell right down to the ice in what was labeled as “embellishment.”
An embarrassing verdict, which units up grounds for an unpleasant state of affairs to unfold Wednesday night time when the Rangers and Capitals play one another but once more.
Within the meantime, the Capitals’ social media group additional stoked the flames by sending out a since-deleted tweet saying the group “chooses violence” with Wilson dwelling “rent-free” within the minds of hockey followers.
His head coach, Peter Laviolette defended Wilson, too — although that’s what most coaches would do for his or her gamers, no matter how inappropriate the motion is.
“I believed it was only a scrum, bodily play,” Laviolette mentioned. “There was one thing happening initially with the goalie and jamming on the goalie. We had a bunch of gamers soar in there. It occurs rather a lot.”
Whereas the Rangers and their fan base fume over Wilson’s antics, the Capitals may not be finished within the New York space this season after Wednesday night time.
Because it stands, the Capitals might meet the Islanders within the first spherical of the Jap Division playoffs. Previous to Tuesday night time’s motion, the Capitals maintain the No. 1 spot within the division whereas the Islanders are within the fourth and closing clinched spot.
These two groups met within the Jap Convention quarterfinals final yr with the Islanders taking down Washington in 5 video games.