The NHL had Tom Wilson mic’d up for the Capitals’ Stadium Series practice on Friday. Although the league didn’t exactly get a ton of soundbites from the rugged winger, the ones they did were high quality.
Wilson, who rocked an ‘A’ on his sweater for the team photo earlier in the night, practiced for just the third time since going down with a lower-body injury on January 24. He skated around the rink at NC State’s Carter-Finley Stadium cracking jokes with teammates and commenting on the outdoor conditions.
“Marty looks so tan,” Wilson first quips to Nic Dowd. The Capitals are only a week or so removed from quite a long All-Star plus bye-week break that ran for the first ten days of February.
Many players took advantage of that time off and departed DC for much warmer destinations involving beaches and oceans. It appears defenseman Martin Fehervary was one of the ones who indulged.
Final tune-up before #StadiumSeries pic.twitter.com/c6ZuouELuy
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) February 18, 2023
“The wind is definitely a factor,” Wilson continued later in practice. “The wind actually blows your stick. We gotta get the old wood sticks out.”
Weather factors are always a huge topic of conversation for every outdoor NHL game. The Hurricanes’ practice earlier on Friday was delayed by rain. Nate Johnson, the official meteorologist for big events at Carter-Finley Stadium, and the league will be monitoring those conditions which include potential wind concerns.
Winds were only gusting up to 7 mph at the stadium as of 3 pm on Saturday. For now, Johnson says, there’s nothing in the forecast that suggests any sort of postponement or delay for Saturday’s puck drop.
Wilson eventually met up with his good buddy TJ Oshie along the boards during a drill. The two talked about exactly what you’d expect them to talk about…feet.
“Good day today,” Wilson started. “Foot bath. When Osh rubs your feet, you’re flying.”
It’s notable that Wilson had a good foot day as the injury that has most recently kept him out of the lineup was to his foot/ankle area.
He went to one knee to block a Mikko Rantanen shot in that late January game and was struck by the hard shot low down on his right leg. He ended up skating just nine total minutes in that game before departing and never returning.
“I had this one dream, that I had your hands,” Wilson finished.
Screenshot via NHL/YouTube
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