Suspension will cost Wilson more than his salary

Brian Tinsman
October 03, 2018 - 7:53 pm
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Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

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Washington Capitals enforcer Tom Wilson may have delivered the big hit to St. Louis Blues center Oskar Sundqvist, but it was the NHL who hit back harder. Wilson was sentenced to a 20-game suspension, which will cost him more than his 2018-19 salary.

Wilson signed a new six-year pact in July that pays an average annual salary north of $5.1 million. However, he is slated to make only $1.1 million this year in salary. The amount that he sacrifices during suspension is based on his average annual salary, which means he will miss out on $1,260,162.20, which is more than $100,000 more than his actual salary this season.

As a result, it will cost Wilson more money than his salary provides. (Fortunately, he signed a $5 million signing bonus this summer.)

How you felt about the suspension largely depended on zip code. Needless to say, the rebuke of the penalty from D.C. sports personalities was swift.

ALSO READ: 106.7 The Fan Personalities React to Wilson's Suspension

Naturally, Wilson's detractors around the league were happy to point out that he has a history of questionable hits. The feeling from many is that Wilson had it coming, after dodging long suspensions in the past.

"For the most part, guys are pretty aware of what's legal and what's not. I mean, we've talked about it a lot with him. He still chooses to make those hits. I’m sure the league is well aware of that," Penguins star Sidney Crosby was all too proud to say. "This is not the first time we're talking about a hit that he's had...for whatever reason, he still decides to do that."

Even Caps TV play-by-play guy Joe Beninati stopped short of defending Wilson in his response to the suspension:

"I continue to tell you and believe that he is not a dirty player. In essence, the hit on Sunday was a clean hit...to the head," he said. "That can't happen anymore. Those are no longer clean hits. Tom has to realize that, and I knew that the NHL was going to try and send a stern message. With 20 games, they assuredly have. 

"This is Wilson's fourth suspension in about 100 games of hockey. The message is: Tom, you can continue to hit ferociously. You can be a MAC truck on skates. They still love that in the sport of hockey. But you need to stay away from the opponents' head; hit through the chest, hit through the core. 

"He has to change his own game. This is a huge loss for the Washington Capitals...without him, the Caps are nowhere near as good of a hockey team."

 

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