This guy again, huh? Yeah. It had been by my count a little over three weeks since Capitals violence-lover Tom Wilson last dropped the gloves, so he must have been just twitching from withdrawal, aching to go out and throw some haymakers at an opponent. It was Colorado Avalanche defenseman Ian Cole who became Wilson’s unfortunate latest victim.
It’s not like Cole had no choice in the matter. He volunteered to get punched when he blindsided Evgeny Kuznetsov with a check illegal enough to get him a major penalty for interference. (Kuznetsov would eventually score the game-winner in overtime.) Before the law could get to Cole, though, Wilson immediately delivered vigilante justice, raining down rights on Cole while the Colorado man failed to return almost any shots, until the refs eventually separated the two. By that point, Cole’s face had blood in several places.
The blood on Wilson was of the more triumphant variety:
Cole ended up costing his team 20 minutes’ worth of penalties for all he did, while Wilson got 17, so this whole sequence led to a three-minute Caps power play. In the box score, one of Cole’s penalties is listed as “fighting.” That’s altogether too kind to him, and if it were more accurate, it’d say, “hit a guy when Tom Wilson was on the ice.”