Yes, this was a nasty hit. Yes, it caused a serious injury. And yes, Cooke is a repeat offender with a terrible track record. But discipline in the playoffs is a different beast and a seven-game ban is just about right. But that won't quell those who feel justice wasn't served.
The judgement has come down and the Minnesota Wild's Matt Cooke (a.k.a. The Most Hated Man In Hockey) has been given a seven-game ban for kneeing Tyson Barrie in Game 3, which put the Colorado D-man out 4-to-6 weeks with an MCL injury.
Stephane Quintal, the NHL's new sheriff, explained the decision as such:
Not surprisingly, the consensus among pundits and non-Wild fans is the suspension was too short, far too short. But the league got this one about right.
Yes, this was a nasty hit. Yes, this caused a serious injury. And yes, Cooke is a repeat offender with a terrible track record. But we've all come to accept - for right or wrong - that playoff games are worth more than regular season games when it comes to suspensions. Based on that, and fully realizing it's far from an exact science, a full series worth of games is equal to about 20 regular season games, which is what the expected and appropriate punishment would be if this happened in the during the months of October to March.
Tell us what you think of the suspension. And, please, try to keep it civil.