Boston Bruins Brandon Carlo Out Indefinitely After Tom Wilson Hit

Brandon Carlo Out

Boston Bruins defenceman Brandon Carlo is out indefinitely with an upper-body injury. Carlo sustained the injury on a hit from Washington Capitals forward Tom Wilson. The team confirmed his status via its Twitter account on Sunday.

Brandon Carlo Injured Following Hit From Tom Wilson

Brandon Carlo suffered the injury in the first period of the Bruins 5-1 win over the Capitals on Friday night. The incident occurred after he beat forward Jakub Vrana in a race to the puck behind the net. Tom Wilson joined the battle and delivered a heavy check on the Bruins defenceman, who had his back turned to protect the puck. The resulting hit was high and forced Carlo’s head into the boards.

The 24-year-old immediately grabbed his face as he fell and stayed down for some time. In the aftermath, Carlo looked dazed and needed help off the ice. He was taken to the hospital in an ambulance after leaving the game.

Wilson did not receive a penalty from the referees for the hit. Although he was forced to answer the bell by Bruins Trent Frederic and Jarred Tinordi.

On Saturday the Department of Player Safety invited Tom Wilson to attend an in-person hearing via Zoom, where he received a seven-game suspension for boarding. This is the fifth time the NHL has suspended the power forward. His previous sanction was for an illegal hit to the head on Oskar Sundqvist in 2018.

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What This Means Going Forward

Tom Wilson’s hit has divided opinion among the hockey community. While many argue that Wilson’s main point of contact was not to the head, the Capitals’ forward enforced his check on a defenceless Carlo, who was already tied up with Jakub Vrana along the wall. Therefore, there was little he could do to absorb the hit without his head crashing into the boards.

Consequently, discussions surrounding player punishment for illegal hits may ramp up further. Especially since Carlo’s injury has occurred in the same week as two other illegal checks within the league. Joachim Blichfeld‘s hit to the head on Nathan MacKinnon (two-game suspension) and Brett Pesce‘s slew-foot of Robby Fabbri (fine) also headlined this week’s work for the Department of Player Safety.

Needless to say, Carlo’s absence is a big loss for Boston. Despite their early-season success, the Bruins have depth issues on the backend. So much so that they recently claimed former Nashville Predator Jarred Tinordi off waivers. This comes an off-season removed from letting first-pair defenceman Torey Krug and franchise legend Zdeno Chara leave for free-agency.

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