Tom Wilson hasn’t played in a game since a late blindside hit from the Vegas Golden Knights’ Ryan Reaves left him with a concussion on December 4. The hit did not receive supplemental discipline from the NHL, but Reaves’s actions afterward created a furor.
In a postgame interview, Reaves said Wilson “was just looking at his pass and ran into a lion in the jungle.” Reaves then did a private autograph signing with a memorobilia company and inscribed that quote on photographs showing Wilson down on the ice injured with a concussion. The negative reaction online forced Reaves to ask to have the photos taken down.
Wilson was asked about the controversy Wednesday after practice.
“I saw it,” Wilson acknowledged, but “[t]here’s no point to me paying any attention to that kind of stuff. It is what it is.”
Wilson didn’t offer an opinion on Reaves’s actions saying instead, “he can do whatever he wants.” The Caps forward did emphasize that Reaves was responsible for whatever those actions were. “It’s up to him, he controls that stuff. Everyone carries themselves differently. It’s up to him.”
When asked about the hit itself, Wilson offered a non-answer answer.
“It sucks, but it’s hockey, it’s good,” Wilson said. “Injuries happen.”
Wilson wore a red jersey in practice on Wednesday, a sign that he was ready for contact and may play as early as Friday’s game against the Carolina Hurricanes. With TJ Oshie and Evgeny Kuznetsov back from concussions and Brooks Orpik returning to the ice this week for the first time since undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery, the Caps may field their full roster in a game soon.
“Our full group is the team that goes out there and competes every night,” Wilson said, “and we’ve done a great job so far.”
Headline photo: NBC Sports Washington
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