Washington Capitals forward Tom Wilson
Photo credit: The Hockey News

Tom Wilson makes controversial actions and they stir up drama

Published April 22, 2024 at 8:55 PM

Washington Capitals enforcer Tom Wilson was on brand this past Sunday. He even dropped a interesting comment, saying:

They owned 5 minutes of that game and we fell behind.

Bold move considering the Washington Capitals got schooled by the President's Trophy-winning New York Rangers, 4-1, in Game 1 at Madison Square Garden. The Rangers nailed three goals in just three minutes, but they also controlled the whole flow, keeping the Capitals from even taking a shot for the first 12 and a half minutes of the third period. And poor Alex Ovechkin couldn't even get a shot off, thanks to the Blueshirts' defense tightening around him. The supposed weakest link, New York's fourth line Jimmy Vesey, Barclay Goodrow, and Matt Rempe owned it, all getting named stars at the end of the game and contributing to two of the team's goals.

Now, onto the drama. Wilson, the Capitals' tough guy, definitely ruffled some feathers with what Rangers fans. While he did assist on the Caps lone goal, he also laid two dirty hits on Mika Zibanejad.

First one came in the second period, with the Rangers up 3-1 and the Capitals on the power play. Zibanejad's near the boards, when Wilson dropped him with a brutal hit. Then, in the same period, Wilson nailed Zibanejad again, this time at center ice, after the puck's already gone elsewhere. Zibanejad didn't seem ready for it, and the other Capitals players had already backed off. Wilson also whacked New York goaltender Igor Shesterkin in the back.

And to cap it off, Wilson and Rangers defenseman Braden Schneider decided to exchange pleasantries with some punches in the final minute of the game, with the Rangers comfortably leading 4-1.

The feud had history dating back to a 2021 incident where Wilson punched then Ranger Pavel Buchnevich in the back of the head and hurt Artemi Panarin. The Rangers were not happy, to say the least, even calling for George Paros, the NHL's head of player safety to be removed.
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