Wilson's big hit sparks fights vs. Flyers
As of 11 a.m. today, an NHL spokesman said there is “nothing scheduled yet” for the hit Capitals rookie Tom Wilson put on Brayden Schenn with 4:43 remaining in the second period of the Tuesday night’s 5-2 loss to the Flyers.
Wilson was given a five-minute major for boarding, five more for fighting Flyers defenseman Nicklas Grossman and a game misconduct. The Flyers scored two goals on the ensuing power play to break open a 2-2 tie.
After the game, Capitals general manager George McPhee, coach Adam Oates and captain Alex Ovechkin all said they thought the hit was clean and should not have been penalized, let alone warrant supplementary discipline from the NHL’s Department of Player Safety.
Flyers coach Craig Berube made this assessment on the hit:
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“It’s a reckless play, hitting from behind like that,” Berube said.
Berube said he checked on Schenn after the game and said he seemed OK. The injury resulting from a check from behind is often cited in the NHL’s decision on discipline.
As for whether he thought Wilson should be suspended, Berube said, “I don’t talk about that stuff. That’s not up to me, that’s up to the league and they’ll take care of that.”
Berube was asked if he thinks players have become more reckless in recent years.
“Players are a lot faster, for sure,” he said. But I think taking the interference out of the game, [defensemen] can’t ride them off and can’t hold them up. They’re coming with a lot of speed and guys go in there and don’t protect themselves very well. They turn and that’s basically what happens 80 percent of the time.
“I don’t know if that was the issue [on Wilson’s hit]. I don’t think a lot of them are intentional. It’s just guys are skating hard and fast and a guy turns a little bit, it’s a tough play.”