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Tom Wilson suspension ends after arbitrator reduces ban

November 13, 2018

Tom Wilson’s suspension is over.

An arbitratorreduced Wilson’s ban Tuesday to 14 games making the Capitals winger eligible to play right away.

Wilson was initiallysuspended for 20 games to begin the season after he delivered a controversial blindside hit against an opponent in the preseason.

NHL and NHLPA statement on Tom Wilson suspension.Complete arbitrator decision: https://t.co/5JXYsGsYbx pic.twitter.com/8s5l6LtxXJ NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) November 13, 2018

Wilson appealed the punishment, setting up a weeks-long process featuring multiple appeals. NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman first upheld the suspension, but Wilson was allowed to appeal to a neutral arbitrator agreed upon by the NHL and its players’ union.

While the Capitals have already played more than 14 games, Wilson will earn back $378,048.78 in lost salary.

The NHL’s original ruling was the longest suspension for on-ice play since 2005, when San Jose’s Raffi Torres received 41 games for a preseason hit. The league said the punishment was a reflection of what was an “unprecedented” series of suspensions for Wilson, who was banned for the fourth time in 13 months.

The Capitals, meanwhile, have missed Wilson starting theseason with a 7-6-3 record. They’ve struggled to fill his role along the first line next to stars Alex Ovechkin and Evgeny Kuznetsov.

Wilson is coming off a career-year in which he had 14 goals and 21 assists. He signed a new six-year, $31 million contract in the offseason.

The Capitals play at the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday, and Wilson could suit up.

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