Thursday, May 03, 2018

Sympathy For the Washington Capitals

Back in 2010 (again, this blog is old), I wrote a post celebrating the fact that the Washington Capitals lost a playoff series. Why am I bringing this up today, 8 years later? Last week, I was featured in a Washington Post article where I said I felt a little sympathy for the Caps (in response to the question of if I feel sympathy for the Caps). Clearly, I've matured over the last 8 years. That's bound to happen when you have kids. Plus, since the 2010 post, the Pens won two more Stanley Cups while the Caps still haven't made it past the second round. That definitely puts things in perspective.

Tuesday night though, I realized that maybe I haven't matured as much as I thought I have thanks to one person: Tom Wilson. Tom Wilson is not the volleyball in Cast Away with Tom Hanks or the neighbor on Home Improvement. This Wilson is a wing for the Washington Capitals and is arguably the dirtiest player in the NHL. I won't go through all of his transgressions, but just in the last two games he delivered head shots to Brian Dumoulin on Sunday, causing him to leave the game, and Zach Aston-Reese on Tuesday resulting in a broken jaw and concussion for Aston-Reese. Wilson also laughed after knocking out Aston-Reese. Good dude, right?

I'm sure Caps fans will bring (and have brought) up former Penguins Matt Cooke and Arron Asham. Cooke, like Wilson, delivered many cheap shots over the years, resulting in significant suspensions and requiring him to change how he played. Asham did this

and after the game apologized and said what he did was classless. Wilson has no remorse, saying that he plays a physical game. Caps coach Barry Trotz is standing by his player.

"Tom is obviously a big body. He’s tremendously strong and he hits hard. My first look at the hit, both guys are bracing for it. It was shoulder-to-shoulder and he just blew through him."

Shoulder to shoulder? Um, no.

Once again, I'm back to eight years ago. I haven't seen any Caps fans say that Wilson did anything wrong. One Caps fan who I'm friends with on Facebook wrote this on Tuesday night:

WOW!!!!!!!! C-A-P-S!!!!! CAPS CAPS CAPS!!!! One of the best games I’ve seen!!!!!

Must be nice to have a player on your team knock out an opponent, not receive a game misconduct or even a penalty, and then help set up the game-winning goal.

If this trip occurred in the second period of a regular season game, this is a penalty. With less than two minutes in the third period of a playoff game, I didn't expect a penalty to be called even though it was one.

On Wednesday evening, the NHL announced that Wilson is suspended for the next three games. Good. Of course, Caps fans aren't happy about this.

As long as Wilson is still on the Caps and the fans continue to unconditionally support him, there is no more sympathy.


Rob Meigs said...

What a joke the nhl is on enforcing safety! Take a look at his charging hit to the head of Wennberg in Round 1. No suspension! Wennberg gets a concussion and Wilson keeps playing. Nhl has no standards and let's him run wild at the expense of player saftey.

Sean said...

A week after this blog post, I'm still upset at Wilson. I fully expect him to continue to deliver the same type of headshots when he returns from the suspension.