In game four, Caps winger Tom Wilson injured Islanders 38-year-old defenseman Lubomir Visnovsky with a clean hit behind the net. That threw gasoline on an already simmering fire — Kyle Okposo injured Eric Fehr the game before in another clean hit— and Visnovksy’s teammates came to his defense through a war of words in the media.
“He’s an idiot,” Islanders forward Kyle Okposo said. “That guy runs around, he hits reckless. He jumps, leaves his feet. There’s no place for that.”
“We could have easily hit a lot of guys like that too,” captain John Tavares said.
On Thursday night, the Islanders looked to serve some frontier justice to Wilson.
First, Anders Lee— a guy who has only one other fight in his career, also against Tom Wilson– fought Wilson. It was a good, hard fight and the first of the series. It seemed like an decent enough way to move on from the hullabaloo.
“He felt that he needed to defend his teammate,” a bloodied Wilson said of Lee. “Kudos to him. I’d do the same thing.”
Then in the third period with the Caps holding a 5-1 lead, the Islanders did something that has no place in hockey.
“I got speared in the private parts from behind,” Wilson explained in full detail to Dan Steinberg of the The DC Sports Bog.
“It didn’t feel good,” Wilson, stating the obvious, said to CSN Washington’s Chuck Gormley. “I just watched the replay. I don’t know what his stick’s doing there. It’s tough.”
The stick or his cup?
“He apologized — just heat of the moment,” Wilson said to Steinberg. “A fairly cheap play, but we’ll just kind of put that in the rear-view, and winning is the most important thing right now.”
Cizikas’s tickling of Wilson’s ivory went unpenalized. Soon after, his line mates Matt Martin and Cal Clutterbuck were ejected for trying to injure Brooks Laich.
“I can’t wait to get back to the Island,” Wilson said to Gormley. “It’s going to be a great game. As much hatred as I’ve gotten from those fans, you know what? It’s passion and I’d like to think it’s all for the good of the game.
“It’ll be good to get in there again and get to business and hopefully close this series out.”
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