NHL suspends Tom Wilson for boarding hit on Brandon Carlo

The NHL department of player safety opted to suspend Capitals forward Tom Wilson for seven games for boarding Bruins defenseman Brandon Carlo.

The Washington Capitals will be without Tom Wilson for seven games after the NHL suspended the forward.

The NHL’s department of player safety announced the decision on Saturday, a day after Wilson violently checked Bruins defenseman Brandon Carlo into the boards.

Wilson wasn’t penalized in the moment, but the NHL reviewed the play and concluded he should have been.

The suspension came complete with a nifty video explaining the incident. The crux of the ruling was this: Wilson hit a defenseless player with enough force to push him into the boards in a dangerous manner.

The NHL ruled Tom Wilson’s hit on Brandon Carlo warranted discipline

That Carlo suffered an upper-body injury was taken into account. He had to be taken to the hospital in an ambulance and was released on Saturday.

The fact that Wilson has a disciplinary record also came into play. He has been suspended four times and fined twice before. He ranks tenth in penalty minutes among active NHL players. He has ranked in the top 10 in the metric each of the last seven seasons.

Wilson has seven goals and 10 assists this season. Washington will need to find a way to cope without him through March 20, when he will be eligible to return for a game against New York.

Despite losing Carlo for the game, the Bruins went on to win 5-1, with the Capitals’ goal coming after Boston had a commanding lead. It’s not clear how much time the defenseman will miss with his injury.

It’s a tight battle in the East Division, with the Islanders ahead of the Capitals by just two points. The Bruins are three points back.