The Vegas Golden Knights and Washington Capitals opened up the Stanley Cup Final with a thrilling game on Monday night. Among the theatrics were a lot of goals, four lead changes, and some rough stuff.
At the forefront was Tom Wilson’s huge hit on Jonathan Marchessault who didn’t have the puck. Marchessault makes a pass up the ice, watches the puck and the play, and Wilson rolls in and crushes him. Wilson doesn’t leave his feet or hit Marchessault in the head, but the hit came well after Marchessault got rid of the puck.
The 5 + game misconduct for Interference was instituted for the very type of late blindside hit Tom Wilson just delivered.
— Kerry Fraser (@kfraserthecall) May 29, 2018
Former NHL referee Kerry Fraser figures the refs in the game missed a call. He suggested that Wilson should have been given a five-minute penalty and a game misconduct for drilling Marchessault when he didn’t have the puck.
Marchessault says he got blindsided by Wilson. "I'm not the one who makes those decisions but I'm sure the league will take care of it."
— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) May 29, 2018
Marchessault, despite not drawing a penalty on the play, has faith that the NHL’s department of player safety will make the right decision. Given Wilson’s history of dirty hits, there’s a good chance we’ll see him get a suspension for this hit.
"He looked fine at the end when he was yelling at me from the bench" 🤷♂️
Tom Wilson says his hit on Marchessault was purely a hockey play. pic.twitter.com/bZgIrMuVek
— NBC Sports Capitals (@NBCSCapitals) May 29, 2018
After the game, Wilson defended himself. He said that Marchessault was completely fine so the hit shouldn’t be as issue.
The Golden Knights would go on to win the game 6-4. Marchessault didn’t bury a goal but he picked up an assist. It put him at 19 for the playoffs which is good for top spot on the Golden Knights. Wilson scored the go-ahead goal in the third period before Vegas rallied for three-unanswered goals to take the win.
What do you think? Did the refs miss something here or is this old time hockey players should expect in the Stanley Cup Final?