Washington Capitals enforcer Tom Wilson exited Wednesday’s game against the New York Rangers with an upper body injury suffered during a fight-filled first period between the bitter East Division rivals.
Wilson, two nights removed from twice throwing a helmet-less Artemi Panarin to the ice during a fracas in front of the Capitals’ net, drew 15 of the 100 penalty minutes generated in the first period of the rematch.
Six players — Nic Dowd, Carl Hagelin and Garnet Hathaway from Washington, and Kevin Rooney, Colin Blackwell and Phillip Di Giuseppe from New York — fought immediately after faceoff.
Wilson stepped on to the ice for his first shift less than a minute into the game and was almost immediately challenged by Brendan Smith, who was assessed a 10-minute instigator penalty following the fight. Two more brawls broke out before Wilson was slashed by Pavel Buchnevich with 4:04 left in the period. Wilson and Rooney were then each assessed 10-minute misconducts after appearing to jaw at one another.
The Capitals announced at the start of the second period Wilson would not return.
Wilson was fined $5,000 by the NHL — the most allowed under the terms of the collective bargaining agreement — for punching Buchnevich in the back of the head at the start of Monday’s incident. The 27-year-old right winger has been suspended a total of 27 games for on-ice incidents in his career, including a seven-game suspension earlier this season for boarding the Boston Bruins’ Brandon Carlo.
–Field Level Media