The number of Matt Cooke incidents just keeps piling up. The scary part is they seem to be picking up in their frequency and this was the second straight game with a dirty play by the Pittsburgh forward. During tonight’s game against the Columbus Blue Jackets, Cooke was assessed a 5-minute major for charging when he left his feet to slam Fedor Tyutin into the boards.
Here’s the video:
The Cooke apologists have been complaining about how Tyutin saw Cooke and turned his back to Cooke, which is what caused the contact to happen the way it did. There is absolutely no excuse to justify this hit where he leaped, making it a clear charging call. Cooke had time to pull out of the hit if he wanted or just go in with his skates on the ice and it might be a different discussion, but that is not the way Matt Cooke thinks hockey should be played. If there is a chance to take a liberty, Cooke will take it and he did here.
The fact that the NHL continues to do nothing to punish Cooke for his repeated violations is what allows this to keep going on and you have to wonder what exactly Cooke has to do for the league to slap him down.
Thankfully Tyutin is ok, but the fact that he is should not be the basis for the penalty or any subsequent action by the league, but unfortunately that seems to be the way it works for the NHL these days.