May 10, 2013, 10:59 AM EDT
The time is now for Tom Wilson.
Wilson, Washington’s first-round pick (16th overall) at the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, will make his team and postseason debut tonight in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinal against the Rangers.
Head coach Adam Oates said Wilson will play on the fourth line with Matt Hendricks and Jay Beagle, and hopes the 19-year-old will provide a “spark” to his club, which has lost two straight to New York.
The 6-foot-4, 210-pound Wilson racked up 58 points in 48 games with OHL Plymouth this season, then scored 17 in 12 playoff games before joining the Bears for the Calder Cup playoffs (Hersey was eliminated on Wednesday night).
Wilson participated with the Caps in their abbreviated training camp prior to the season, thoroughly impressing Oates with his style of play.
“He looked great out there,” Oates told the Washington Times in January. “He skated great, he looked like one of the guys and sometimes I didn’t realize it was him.”
- Video: Flames stun Ducks in OT to get back in the series 5
- Video: Controversial no-goal call on Flames 6
- Video: Crawford, Kane help Blackhawks push Wild to brink of elimination 33
- WATCH LIVE: Tonight’s Stanley Cup Playoff action 1
- Prust apologizes for all the stuff he said about referee Watson 48
- Flyers will be ‘extremely patient’ with youngsters, but ‘want a winner as soon as possible’ 22
- Here’s your Stanley Cup playoff TV schedule for tonight 16
- Holtby outduels Lundqvist as Caps take series lead 52
- Red Wings’ Devellano calls Mantha ‘very, very, very disappointing’ 66
- End of an era in New Jersey as Shero replaces Lamoriello as GM 26
- Vigneault: ‘Standards have been set’ after Ovechkin, Backstrom hits (103)
- ‘You can’t win,’ ex-NHL ref Fraser says of Prust incident (83)
- Lightning’s Bishop silences Red Wings in hard fought Game 7 (81)
- Babcock won’t discuss future yet, but sees challenges ahead for Wings (78)
- New York second: Capitals stun Rangers for 1-0 series lead (76)