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NHL rescinds match penalty, no suspension for Tom Wilson

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NHL rescinds match penalty, no suspension for Tom Wilson

Tom Wilson has been vindicated. Thirty-eight hours after Wilson was assessed a match penalty for a deliberate attempt to injure Ottawa Senators forward Curtis Lazar, the NHL has rescinded the penalty and waived the automatic suspension that goes with it. A league source confirmed the ruling to CSN Mid-Atlantic.

As a result, Wilson will be in the lineup tonight at Verizon Center when the Capitals face the Tampa Bay Lightning (6:30 p.m. pregame, CSN). Wilson is also expected to have his 10-minute misconduct struck from the record, dropping his team-high penalty minutes from 75 to 65.

It might take a little more for Wilson to erase the reputation he has earned around the NHL as a dirty player, a reputation his teammates say is completely unwarranted.

“Everyone’s pretty aware of it. We feel he gets targeted by the refs,” Caps center Michael Latta said. “Not necessarily by the league because they haven’t suspended him. But he definitely gets targeted by the refs. He’s a young guy and he plays a big game and I think he gets targeted a lot.

“You saw (Wednesday night). I thought it was a pretty harmless hit. (Lazar) is trying to go one-on-two or one-on-three and you’re never going to get a good situation like that unless you’re Ovi (Alex Ovechkin). (Lazar) kind of put himself in a bad situation there and Willy bumps him.

“I think it’s definitely a reputation call and it could have jeopardized the game for us.”

Capitals right wing T.J. Oshie agrees.

“I think ‘Whip’ kind of has a target on his back right now,” Oshie said. “It’s unfortunate for him. He’s a young guy, he plays hard and for him to have a target on his back, it’s unfortunate. When it’s not a penalty you don’t want to see a guy leave for five minutes and have his team have to kill it off.”

Wilson and Capitals coach Barry Trotz spoke at length on Thursday about Wilson’s reputation and his need to stay on the ice in critical situations for the Capitals.

Wilson, 21, has had a handful of hits reviewed by the NHL without consequence.         

[RELATED: Are the refs targeting Tom Wilson?]

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How the Caps won their first round series against the Columbus Blue Jackets

How the Caps won their first round series against the Columbus Blue Jackets

Things did not look good for the Capitals after two games.

Facing a 0-2 series hole after losing both games in Washington, it looked like it could be an early summer. The Caps were going to be the first team to ever lose a series in the playoffs to the Columbus Blue Jackets.

HOW DID THE CAPS WIN THEIR SERIES AGAINST COLUMBUS? FIND OUT HERE

But the Caps rallied.

Washington won the next four games and turned what looked like it would be another postseason disaster into a postseason triumph.

Only once in franchise history had the Caps rallied from a 0-2 deficit and only once had the Caps won four straight games to win a series. They managed both against the Blue Jackets.

Here's how the Caps were able to rally to a first-round victory over Columbus.

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NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs 2018: Capitals vs. Penguins schedule, date, time, TV channel, how to watch

NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs 2018: Capitals vs. Penguins schedule, date, time, TV channel, how to watch

The Capitals and Penguins face off in the 2018 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs Eastern Conference semifinals, marking the third consecutive season the two Metro Division rivals have met in the playoffs.

The Capitals have beaten the Penguins in a playoff series just once in ten attempts dating back to 1991, and all five of the Penguins' Stanley Cup Championships included series wins over Washington.

The Capitals and Penguins split the regular-season series 2-2, with both teams picking up wins at home and on the road. The Capitals outscored the Penguins 13-12 over the course of the four regular-season games. 

The Capitals vs. Penguins 2018 NHL Playoff series will begin on Thursday, April 24 at Capital One Arena in Washington, D.C. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. E.T.

Pregame coverage of the Capitals vs. Penguins on NBC Sports Washington begins an hour before puck-drop with Caps FaceOff, followed by Caps GameTime.

Caps Extra follows each playoff game with Caps OverTime after that. 

Stream Pre- and postgame coverage of Capitals vs. Penguins Game 1 on NBC Sports Washington.

Game 2 information has yet to be released.

CAPITALS vs. PENGUINS 2018 NHL PLAYOFF SCHEDULE

Game 1: Penguins at Capitals
Date: Thursday, April 26
Time: 7:00 p.m. ET
Location: Capital One Arena, Washington, D.C.
TV Channel: NBC Sports Network (Channel Finder)
How To Watch Live StreamingNBC Sports App Live Stream
Radio: Capitals Radio Network (1500 AM)

Game 2: Penguins at Capitals
Date: TBD
Time: TBD
Location: Capital One Arena, Washington, D.C.
TV Channel: TBD (Channel Finder)
How To Watch Live StreamingNBC Sports App Live Stream
Radio: Capitals Radio Network (1500 AM)

Game 3: Capitals at Penguins
Date: TBD
Time: TBD
Location: PPG Paints Arena, Pittsburgh, Penn.
TV Channel: TBD (Channel Finder)
How To Watch Live StreamingNBC Sports App Live Stream
Radio: Capitals Radio Network (1500 AM)

Game 4: Capitals at Penguins
Date: TBD
Time: TBD
Location: PPG Paints Arena, Pittsburgh, Penn.
TV Channel: TBD (Channel Finder)
How To Watch Live StreamingNBC Sports App Live Stream
Radio: Capitals Radio Network (1500 AM)

Game 5 (If Necessary): Penguins at Capitals
Date: TBD
Time: TBD
Location: Capital One Arena, Washington, D.C.
TV Channel: NBC (Channel Finder)
How To Watch Live StreamingNBC Sports App Live Stream
Radio: Capitals Radio Network (1500 AM)

Game 6 (If Necessary): Capitals at Penguins
Date: TBD
Time: TBD
Location: PPG Paints Arena, Pittsburgh, Penn.
TV Channel: TBD (Channel Finder)
How To Watch Live StreamingNBC Sports App Live Stream
Radio: Capitals Radio Network (1500 AM)

Game 7 (If necessary): Penguins at Capitals
Date: TBD
Time: TBD
Location: Capital One Arena, Washington, D.C.
TV Channel: TBD (Channel Finder)
How To Watch Live StreamingNBC Sports App Live Stream
Radio: Capitals Radio Network (1500 AM)