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Dec 2018
Sports fans love dichotomies
Brady or Montana?
James or Jordan?
The NHL is aware of this
And possesses two generational players
Alexander Ovechkin and Sydney Crosby
Ovechkin plays for the Washington Capitals
And Crosby plays for the Pittsburgh Penguins
One of the most notable team rivalries in sports
So the NHL asks fans to pick a side for marketing purposes
Ovechkin is sold as strength while Crosby is sold as finesse
Which would be a reasonable way to advertise their league
But like every sports league they are dealing with safety concerns
And the NHL is trying to escape the ignorant assumption
That hockey revolves around brutality and is of a primitive nature
So they don’t want to highlight the sports’ physicality
During this delicate and uncertain time
So more often than not Crosby is favored over Ovechkin
Through officiating, commentating, administrating and marketing
Which implicitly sells Crosby over Ovechkin
To the lowest common denominator
Who are interested in those kind of dichotomies

Since the Capitals are the highest profile team
That plays especially physical
The NHL feels the need to treat them with particular austerity
To show they are serious about safety
But this results in massively inconsistent actions by the league

Tom Wilson is one of the Capitals’ best players and their best checker
He was suspended for 20 games for a slightly late hit
He was in proper checking form
Shoulder down and leading, feet planted on the ice
But made incidental contact with Oskar Sundqvist’s head
Giving Sundqvist a concussion so the NHL suspended Wilson
Meanwhile...
Tom Wilson is attacked from behind by Ryan Reaves
On a very ***** hit that had no athletic function or basis in hockey
Launching himself at the back of Wilson’s head on a cheap shot
Giving Wilson a concussion
Reaves was very proud of himself
Selling autographed pictures of an injured Tom Wilson
And the NHL had nothing to say

Tom Wilson received a 20 game suspension
Losing hundreds of thousands of dollars
For an overzealous check
But when he is maliciously attacked with the intent to injure
There is no suspension handed down

A wise man once said
“An injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere”
And I agree
So I can’t stand seeing someone treated with a blatant bias
If it’s on Capitol Hill or in the Capitals’ stadium
And don’t want to live in a world where that’s acceptable

If I could say something to Tom Wilson
I’d say thank you for handling the situation with grace
And not to pay too much attention
To the biased elite or the mindless masses
Because all they try to do is dip you in molasses
They’re not going to protect you on the ice
That’s something you must do on your own
And there’s a lot of people who’ll try to give themselves importance
By eliminating those of higher value
You just have to be able to take their hits
And hit back harder than they ever could
Andrew Rueter
Written by
Andrew Rueter  28/M/Kentucky
(28/M/Kentucky)   
188
 
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