The Department of Player Safety has fined Washington Capitals forward Tom Wilson $5,000 for roughing New York Rangers forward Pavel Buchnevich. News of the ruling broke via the department’s Twitter account on Tuesday morning.
Washington’s Tom Wilson has been fined $5,000, the maximum allowable under the CBA, for Roughing NY Rangers’ Pavel Buchnevich.
— NHL Player Safety (@NHLPlayerSafety) May 4, 2021
Tom Wilson Fined For Hit to the Head
The incident occurred in the second period of Washington’s 6-3 victory over the Rangers on Monday when a melee broke out in the Capitals goal crease. Scrambling in pursuit of a loose puck, the Capitals convened on Pavel Buchnevich who was on the doorstep, attempting to stuff the puck into the net. As the whistle blew, with Buchnevich on the ground, Tom Wilson delivered blows to the head.
Immediately a brawl broke out in reaction to the shot on a Buchnevich. Artemi Panarin went after Wilson and while the two were tied up, Wilson delivered a series of body slams as he rag-dolled the Rangers talisman to the ice.
Tom Wilson gets a 10-minute misconduct for punching Buchnevich in the head on the ground and body slamming Panarin pic.twitter.com/fg2HRej8yD
— Brady Trettenero (@BradyTrett) May 4, 2021
In the aftermath, Wilson received two roughing minors and a 10-minute misconduct for his brutish actions.
The Wider Issue With Wilson
Tom Wilson is one of the DoPS’s biggest problems. He has already received a multi-game suspension this year for a dangerous hit on Boston Bruins defenceman Brandon Carlo. Tom Wilson has a long history with the DoPS, receiving multiple fines and suspensions over the years. The fine on Wilson speaks to the league’s reluctance to suspend players, only giving out minor penalties.
The league has shown this reluctance with other incidents in the past as well. Incidents including Brett Pesce‘s slew-foot on Robby Fabbri and Connor McDavid‘s elbow to the head on Jesperi Kotkaniemi. Both were dangerous because of the potential damage to the victims’ heads.
With the league not cracking down on these dangerous plays, it can create an environment where the players feel that justice needs to be served and, as a result, creating further dangerous plays in the future. Above all, the league doesn’t have a good track record in protecting the victims of these types of plays.
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