Tom Wilson isn’t shy on the ice. According to hockeyfights.com, he’s dropped the gloves 23 times in junior. He’s broken his knuckles twice. He even earned the nickname The Ten Train because his brutal hits always arrive on time.
After the second day of Caps Development Camp, Wilson was asked if anyone in the coaching staff requested before last year’s camp that he tone down his game. Wilson responded with a wry smile and a chuckle. “I don’t know,” he said. “I can’t really remember having that conversation. Yeah, there’s a couple guys that went down last year. That’s just the way I play. It’s not really going to change.”
Later, Wilson revealed how nastiness became a part of his game at an early age.
“I can remember my first body-checking practice [as a kid],” Wilson, beaming, began. “I mean, I loved it. One guy would stand in the middle of the circle, and then there’d be like ten guys [standing] around the outside of the circle. One guy would stand in the middle and then everyone would take a run at him. You’d have to defend yourself. I can remember it vividly so I must have liked it.”
Wilson couldn’t nail down the exact age when the drill took place, though in 2006, the Canadian Hockey Association allowed body checking to begin in peewee levels from ages 12 to 13 and up.
“Ever since [that practice], I’ve been a really competitive kid,” Wilson said. “I like to work hard and finish my checks and make an influence that way for sure.”
Wilson is willing, no– eager to hit his teammates in a rookie camp, and yesterday he chirped a small child in the stands for wearing a Blackhawks shirt. He’s the Washington Capitals’ first totally evil prospect.
Andre Burakovsky will eat his macaroni and cheese, and HE WILL LIKE IT.