Tom Wilson is back.
The Capitals right winger again blurred the lines of the 6-3 win over Rangers on Monday. Not only did he hit New York striker Pavel Buchnevich’s head in the crease after the game was stopped, but he hit left winger Artemi Panarin on the ice as he came in defense of Buchnevich and Ryan Strome.
Strome went after Wilson after beating Buchnevich in the middle while the Rangers were in the power play. The incident occurred at 12:20 p.m. in the second period:
Artemiy Panarin reacts to Tom Wilson, the rangers and caps get into a crush, and Wilson finally wrestles Panarin into the ice … pic.twitter.com/OvCeGkDJyF
– Shayna (@hayyyshayyy) May 4, 2021
MORE: Tom Wilson’s Suspension Schedule: Controversial Capital has built its career on blurring lines
This was also not a case in which Wilson retaliated against Buchnevich for leading the goalkeeper. The latter was headed onto the ice from behind before Wilson decided to add something after the whistle. Wilson was classified as a double minor for roughing and 10-minute misconduct, while Buchnevich and Panarin were both punished with roughing. Brendan Dillon also got a roughing minor to give the Rangers a two-man advantage for 27 seconds.
Wilson’s career is a patchwork of suspensions, fines, questionable behavior, and downright dangerous play. The most recent egregious example came on March 5th when he boarded Boston’s Brandon Carlo, hit him and slammed his head against the glass. The move was not punished in-game, despite the NHL’s suspension of seven games for infraction.
ReakBreaking News: In some good news, #NHLBruins Bruce Cassidy said Brandon Carlo was released from the hospital early this morning. No further information at the moment. Carlo was driven by ambulance after this hit by #AllCaps Tom Wilson. pic.twitter.com/CKdtbJQE7W
– Hockey Hound (@HockeyHoundShow) March 6, 2021
It is uncertain what suspension or fine the NHL will impose on Wilson, a repeat offender. However, observers inside and outside the league have called for tougher penalties to be imposed on him to keep players safe. For their part, the capitals didn’t seem to mind:
“I thought you should have more respect for the game and the players,” said Rangers center Mika Zibanejad after the game. “Yeah, I don’t even know, I honestly don’t know where to start. It’s just awful. There is no respect and I don’t know why I’m surprised. But yeah, it’s just awful.”
Said Rangers coach David Quinn:
“We all saw it. There are lines that cannot be crossed in this game and there is just zero respect for the game in general. You now have one of the star players in this league who could have been seriously, seriously injured this incident. “