Boston Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy criticized Washington Capitols winger Tom Wilson after a high hit on Boston's Brandon Carlo resulted in the defenseman being transported to the hospital via ambulance.
"Predatory hit from a player who's done that before," Cassidy said after the 5-1 victory. "Completely unnecessary, dirty."
Wilson was not penalized on the play. However, that does not preclude the NHL from doling out punishment after the fact, especially given Wilson's history as a repeat offender.
Through his six years in the NHL, Wilson has been suspended a total of 23 games, resulting in the forfeiture of nearly $1 million in salary.
Players on the other end of his hits have suffered various head injuries, including concussions and a broken jaw. His longest suspension came in the form of a 20-game banishment after an illegal check to the head in a preseason game—a ruling that was upheld by NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman on appeal.
The extent of Carlo's injuries remains unclear as of Friday night, and no timetable was given for his return.
The 24-year-old skated just eight shifts before Wilson's hit, registering one shot on goal with one shot block.
Carlo's Bruins teammates remained heated over Wilson's antics after the game.
"That was a bulls--t hit," Boston's Brad Marchand told NESN after the game. "Brando had his head down in the corner, and he took the liberty on a guy that was in a vulnerable spot. That's a cheat shot there. We lost a great player."
NHL Player Safety has not announced whether it will investigate the incident.
Boston and Washington aren't scheduled to play each other again until April 8 in D.C.