The Hershey Bears ended their season last night. Martin Erat might have done that as well when he slammed his wrist into the net. As a result, the Capitals have recalled youngling Tom Wilson and former NHL player Joey Crabb from the Hershey Bears.

Are these our 2013 black aces, or will Wilson or Crabb see some play? Will Aaron Volpatti go from waiver wire to playoff hockey in the span of a few months? Will Wojtek Wolski ever play again?

P.S. Ovi for Lindsay.

From the Capitals:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – May 9, 2013

Capitals Recall Tom Wilson and Joey Crabb from the Hershey Bears
ARLINGTON, Va. – The Washington Capitals have recalled right wings Tom Wilson and Joey Crabb from the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League (AHL), vice president and general manager George McPhee announced today.

Wilson, 19, made his professional debut with Hershey in Game 3 of the AHL Eastern Conference quarterfinal vs. Providence and recorded one goal and six penalty minutes in three playoff games with the Bears. He recently completed his season with Plymouth after helping the Whalers reach the OHL Western Conference Championship Series where they fell to London in five games. Wilson earned OHL Player of the Week honors for the week ending April 21 and collected six goals, two assists and 12 penalty minutes in his last four games of the championship series. He and teammate (and fellow Capitals prospect) Connor Carrick both ranked in the top-10 in playoff scoring when Plymouth was eliminated as Wilson recorded 17 points (nine goals, eight assists) and 41 penalty minutes in his 12 playoff games.

The Toronto native, who was drafted in the first round (16th overall) by the Capitals in the 2012 NHL Draft in Pittsburgh, recorded 58 points (23 goals, 35 assists) and 104 penalty minutes in 48 regular season games with Plymouth this season. He ranked fifth on Plymouth in points, tied for sixth in goals and second in penalty minutes despite missing 20 games. The 6’4”, 210-pound forward was recalled on Jan. 12 to participate in the Capitals training camp.

In 2011-12 he collected 27 points (nine goals, 18 assists) and 141 penalty minutes in 49 games with Plymouth and added 13 points (seven goals, six assists) in 13 OHL playoff games. Wilson was voted as the ‘Best Body Checker’ in the OHL’s 2012 Western Conference Coaches Poll and was a runner up for the ‘Hardest Worker’ category.

Wilson won a gold medal with Team Canada at the 2011 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament, posting three goals in five games. He also won gold with Team Ontario at the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, recording one assist and six penalty minutes in four games. The Capitals signed Wilson to a three-year, entry level contract on July 19, 2012.

Crabb, 30, collected two goals and eight penalty minutes in 26 games with Washington this season and six goals and six assists in 12 games with Hershey. He led the Bears with five goals in five games during the Calder Cup Playoffs.

Last season he recorded career highs in goals (11), assists (15), points (26) and games played (67) with the Toronto Maple Leafs. He finished the season ranked 11th on Toronto in points and eighth in goals while his plus-one rating finished tied for fifth on the team. In addition, Crabb recorded three assists in eight games with the United States at the 2012 World Championships.

The Anchorage, Alaska, native has appeared in 170 career NHL games with Atlanta, Toronto and Washington, compiling 52 points (20 goals, 32 assists) and 93 penalty minutes. He has collected 184 points (79 goals, 105 assists) in 311 career AHL games with Hershey, Chicago and Toronto. The 6’1”, 190-pound forward won a Calder Cup championship with the Chicago Wolves in 2007-08, posting one goal and five assists in 24 playoff games. Crabb was originally drafted by the New York Rangers in the seventh round (226th overall) of the 2002 NHL Entry Draft after spending four seasons at Colorado College (NCAA).

Both Wilson and Crabb will participate in today’s 11:30 a.m. Capitals practice at Kettler Capitals Iceplex. Wilson wears No. 43 while Joey Crabb wears No. 15 for Washington.

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  • http://twitter.com/B_Scarbro Benjamin Scarbro

    Erat is Right Wing, correct? So Volpatti/Wolski (left) shouldn’t get the bump, correct?

  • yv

    Erat playing in Caps on LW b/c shoots left. Laich, if ready can replace him temporarily there. Interesting to see what will happen with bottom 2 lines, who will play with whom and where.

  • leaveittobeagle

    He slammed his wrist against the ice during the hit, not the post. Glove came off and his arm hit with some force. I’m guessing he broke something. Boy I hope Latta turns out to be good.

    I don’t know what pierre mcguire was smoking when he called that play? he starts barking headshot immediately and repeats it about 10 times, then later casually admits no headshot. What a joke.

    Caps need to get their swagger back, stat. Hoping Wilson can bring something, but thats a whole lot to ask from this kid.

  • OlietheGoalie

    Pierre is a tool. That’s as far as you need to take his credibility.

  • http://www.facebook.com/Funployee Greg Girard

    If Wilson plays more than a certain amount of games, does that burn a year off of his entry-level deal?

  • http://www.russianmachineneverbreaks.com/ Peter Hassett
  • yv

    >5 games this postlockout season

  • yv

    no separation, if he plays total 6 games or more he will burn 1 year of his ELC in lockout-shortened season, 5 or less will not count. During normal full season more than 9 games burn 1 year. This topic is always the hot one after the start of season, who should stay or who should send down.

  • Hockeynightincanada

    I really hope people aren’t expecting much from Wilson. He’s not anywhere near comparable to Lucic. Different body types. Tom is not very strong on his skates but he is very physical. He also takes a lot of roughing penalties, but once that happens the Caps will call it “undisciplined,” and we will have ruined yet another prospect’s game for which he was made to fill. We need a power forward for once.

  • http://www.russianmachineneverbreaks.com Ian Oland

    “Tom is not very strong on his skates”

    This is just blatantly false. I had the same concern that his ginormous size would = bad skating. Then I went to Hershey and saw him be one of the fastest skaters on the ice. His goal came because he beat Chris Bourque in a foot race to the net.

    http://www.russianmachineneverbreaks.com/2013/05/06/tom-wilson-scores-first-ahl-goal-draws-two-penalties-and-yaps-constantly-in-bears-5-4-loss/

    I personally wouldn’t play him in this Rangers series, because he had such a great finish to the season — why risk it? But he definitely has NHL quality wheels, hands, and then oh yeah he’s a big brute.

  • Hockeynightincanada

    Maybe his skating has improved. Props to him if so, but I just fear his career in the NHL will not go well as a Washington Capital. Not with this system at least. Now maybe a team like St. Louis, Los Angeles, Chicago, or Philadelphia, but we have yet to really draft and develop a power forward from draftee to the NHL level. I don’t count Ovie for obvious reasons.

    If in a year’s time, Wilson’s play is similar to how he was projected or how he played prior to here, more power to him and to you guys, and I will happily eat crow. Same with the series outcome. It just seems all too familiar to me.

    I really do enjoy reading the work you guys do here.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mpbonaco Mike Bonacolta

    Really hoping Wilson is in for game 5, he skated today with Hendricks(Go Blades!) and Beagle, which is where he would fill in, on the 4th line. I like Volpatti, but something is making me feel like Wilson has what it takes. Oates will end up making the decision that’s best. In Oates I trust! Go Caps!