LAS VEGAS — Tom Wilson will not have a hearing for his big hit on Jonathan Marchessault in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final.
After the contest, which Vegas won 6-4, Golden Knights Coach Gerard Gallant described Wilson’s crushing open-ice hit on his first line winger as “real late” and deserving of a major penalty.
Marchessault, meantime, said he got “blindsided” but stopped short of saying he thought a suspension was warranted.
“I’m not a guy that makes those decisions, but I’m sure the league is going to take care of it,” Marchessault told reporters, per ESPN.com
As it turns out, the NHL’s Department of Player Safety did not request a hearing with Wilson, meaning the decision-makers believe the minor penalty the Caps’ hard-hitting winger was assessed for interference was sufficient enough.
Although the hit appeared to be delivered late, there was no head contact. Also, Marchessault returned to the game after clearing the NHL’s concussion protocol.
Wilson, who has been suspended three times this season, including a three-game ban in the second round for breaking the jaw of rookie Zach Aston-Reese, defended his hit, saying, “He might have been a little surprised by it, but it wasn’t an aggressive hit. He looked fine at the end [of the game] when he was yelling at me from the bench and ‘woo-hooing’. It was just a hockey play.”
Immediately after the game, Coach Barry Trotz said he expected Wilson to be available for Game 2.
And fortunately for the Caps, that is going to be the case.
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