NHL Rookie Watch: Tom Wilson – Washington Capitals

Tom WilsonTOM WILSON Scouting Reports

Date of birth: 03/29/1994
Height: 6′ 4″
Weight: 210
Position: RW
Acquired: Drafted in the 1st round, 16th overall in 2012 by Washington

Corey Pronman Hockey Prospectus - @coreypronman

Year in Review: Wilson continued off his success in the 2012 OHL playoffs. He was a top player on a top OHL team, and he developed several key aspects.

The Good: Wilson is an elite physical forward who is big and unusually strong for a U20 player. He has a very tough and hard-working element to his game. He notched a lot of points this season by going to the dirty areas, be it with power moves or planting himself in front of the net, where he was impossible to move for opponents. He is smarter with his physicality, and he did not take as many dumb penalties as he did two seasons ago. Wilson has shown solid defensive value. He protects the puck well and has fine coordination handling it. He positions himself well in the offensive zone, and he makes good decisions with the puck. He has improved his skating immensely, and is arguably a good skater now.

The Bad: Wilson’s offensive sense is not a glaring weaknesses, but it is roughly average. He does not really stand out from an offensive standpoint, but he makes decent plays. Still, he will not be a player the offense flows through.

Projection: He could be a second line winger with elite physical value.

Internationals Scouting Services - @ISSHockey

A big, intense and physical player, Wilson often strikes fear into the hearts of opponents, as he plays with energy reserved for much smaller players and hits like a truck. Wilson is a beast around the net and can be impossible to move. Wilson can hurt you on the scoreboard and can really hurt you physically. Washington has needed this type of player for a while, and he should pay immediate dividends.

Dobber Prospects@dobberprospects

October 2013: Wilson has seen less than seven minutes of ice-time per game through six games, including zero powerplay time. Keep him stashed away in the minors until he can work his way up the depth chart, which this season is highly unlikely. By Nathan Kanter

October 2013: Wilson has successfully made the Caps opening day roster. He will be playing with Martin Erat and fellow rookie Michael Laata on the fourth line to open the season against the Hawks. His aggression and physical play will serve well but don’t forget he can also score. For now though, limited offensive opportunities. Nathan Kanter

Fantasy Outlook: B Wilson is one of the better multi-cat options out there as he can put up both points and penalty minutes. Breaking into the Caps top-six will be difficult however.

Profile by Luke Anthony

Strengths: Wilson is extremely strong for his age, very physical, and not afraid to drop the gloves. He protects the puck well with his big body and remains pretty disciplined for the way he plays the game. Wilson is a pretty good skater for his size and good offensively.

Weaknesses: While there aren’t any real problems with his game, his offensive ability and speed (though it shouldn’t be a surprise with his size) aren’t elite.

General: He’s a good prospect, but not elite. It’s definitely fair to project him as a physical second line NHL forward.

2012-13 Season: After being drafted in the first round in the summer of 2012, the Washington Capitals must have been all smiles about Tom Wilson’s 2012-13 season. Wilson made major strides in his offensive game and skating. He was a very key player on one of the top teams in the Ontario Hockey League. The Plymouth Whalers lost to the London Knights in the Western Conference Finals. After his OHL team was eliminated, he went to play three games for the Hershey Bears of the American hockey league. Wilson scored one goal before the Bears were eliminated by the Providence Bruins, the Boston Bruins’ AHL affiliate team. He was subsequently called up to the Washington Capitals and made his NHL debut in the Stanley Cup playoffs against the New York Rangers. Wilson played three games before the Capitals were eliminated from the NHL playoffs.

2013-14 Season: Out of training camp, Wilson managed to make the Washington Capitals opening night roster. After seven games, Wilson is averaging only 6:41 minutes a game. It’s unclear if the Capitals will keep him for entire season or not. A major wrinkle in this decision for the Capitals is that Wilson is ineligible to play in the AHL due to his age and being drafted out of the OHL. It’s either the NHL or OHL.

The Capitals draft Tom Wilson 16th overall in 2012

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  1. #1 by Kevin at October 23rd, 2013

    I’m becoming increasingly more worried with each game that he is molding more into an enforcing power forward than a scoring power forward.
    Being given only 5-7 minutes a game with linemates like Volpatti, can’t be good for a youngsters development. On top of that, why is he the one dropping the gloves when Erskine is on the ice…
    GMGM fails again at creating an atmosphere where a young kid with potential like Wilson’s can flourish.

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