clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

2019-20 Rink Wrap: Tom Wilson

From Backstrom to Wilson, we’re taking a look at and grading the 2019-20 season for every player who laced ‘em up for the Caps for a significant number of games during the campaign, with an eye towards 2020-21. Last but not least, Tom Wilson.

New York Islanders v Washington Capitals - Game Four Photo by Mark Blinch/NHLI via Getty Images

Regular Season:


Key Stat: With 21 goals, Wilson crossed the 20-goal threshold again this season, falling one short of his career high set in 2018-19 - which incidentally was the second-straight time he’s hit 20+ goals in a shortened season (he played 63 last year due to suspension and 68 this year because of the pandemic).

The Good: Wilson continued his upward offensive trajectory this season, setting new career highs in assists (23) and points (44), power-play goals (5) and points (7), and game-winning goals (5) — including his first-career overtime tally. As noted above, he also logged a second 20-goal campaign, one of just four Caps to top 20 this season

Outside of his production, Wilson’s biggest step forward this season was a clear focus on discipline. In fact, for the first time in his career he finished the year with fewer than 100 penalty minutes — still among the League’s heavies in that department, but well below what we’ve seen from him in the past. While one could be tempted to chalk that up to the shortened season, he racked up 35 more minutes in the box last year in five fewer games, and his PIM/game rate was the lowest ever at just 1.37. And yet despite cutting back on his time in the penalty box, it didn’t cut back on his physicality, as he tied his career high in hits.

The Bad: Wilson’s GF% at even strength was a lowly 45%, the lowest of any Caps’ player this season (min. 200 minutes TOI), and was just barely above 50% in ES CF% (fourth-lowest among Caps forwards, although it was his second-highest CF% of his career).

And then there was the “postseason”, such as it was, where the offensive production Wilson had been providing for the Caps suddenly disappeared (although granted, that was something of a teamwide malaise). He managed just three points in the Caps’ eight games, only two of which were in the series that actually mattered - and both of those were assists.

Oh, and that newfound discipline? Also gone in the playoffs, as he racked up 23 PIMs in those eight games (including 11 minutes in Game 1 vs. the Islanders alone, partly a product of him coming to an injured Nicklas Backstrom’s defense).

The Video:

Wilson scores his first career regular-season overtime goal against the Panthers:

The Charts:

The Discussion: Which linemates do you think mesh the best with Wilson’s power forward style? Do you think Wilson can continue to cut back on his penalty minutes or will his penchant for dropping the gloves continue to keep that total up? Finally, what would it take for you to give Wilson a 10 next season?

Other Wilson Season Reviews: Coming soon!

The Vote: Rate Wilson below on a scale of 1-10 (10 being the best) based on his performance relative to his potential and your expectations for the season - if he had the best year you could have imagined him having, give him a 10; if he more or less played as you expected he would, give him a 5 or a 6; if he had the worst year you could have imagined him having, give him a 1.


How would you rate Tom Wilson’s 2019-20 season?

This poll is closed

  • 3%
    (3 votes)
  • 13%
    (12 votes)
  • 20%
    (18 votes)
  • 33%
    (29 votes)
  • 18%
    (16 votes)
  • 6%
    (6 votes)
  • 1%
    (1 vote)
  • 0%
    (0 votes)
  • 1%
    (1 vote)
  • 0%
    (0 votes)
86 votes total Vote Now