Posts Tagged ‘Matt Cooke’

I Understand, I Just Don’t Agree

Posted: August 24, 2011 by JoeyD in NHL, Pittsburgh Penguins
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Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune Review wrote a piece about a tough season for Matt Cooke of the Penguins that went far beyond just his play on the ice.  Cooke’s wife Michelle had a potentially life-threatening situation shortly after the Winter Classic coupled with egregious mistakes on the ice that lead to multiple suspensions made for quite the difficult year to date for the Penguins right winger.

Thus far, the litany of comments in response to the article have been expectantly mixed with both the pro and con opinions coming as no surprise.  In regards to the types of comments that are more negative or those with a general malaise; I understand, I just don’t agree.

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Warning: This is part two of a three part “story”, so if you haven’t read part one, do yourself a favor and read it.

To refresh your memories, the five remaining players are: Carcillo, Downie, Westgarth, Konopka & Clutterbuck.

RD: It’s time for our next participant and it’s….no way! It’s Martin Brodeur! And he’s got full gear on!

Joey: I don’t think that’s gear, RD.  Might just be some…extra padding, if you know what I mean.

Rob: Regardless, he’s a legend in this match and who knows how much respect he’ll demand as he steps into the ring.

RD: Brodeur’s not known for fisticuffs like a lot of these other competitors, but it looks like he’s willing to give it a shot.

Joey: He and Downie have paired off. Marty looks awkward but he’s holding his own.

RD: Marty might have an issue with the #14 entrant….it’s New York’s Sean Avery.

Rob: Avery has jumped in front of Marty between him and Downie. And seems to be doing some sort of hand gestures, with his back to Brodeur.

Joey: Whatever it is, Brodeur didn’t take too kindly and took advantage of Avery being turned away and tossed him out.

RD: Short night for Sean Avery, who’s not happy with being eliminated.

Rob: He just punched the official that told him he was out of the match!

Joey: We’re now halfway through the rumble, here’s #15, Winnipeg’s Dustin Byfuglien.

Rob: While Big Buff gets himself acquainted, Konopka just clotheslined Westgarth out of the match.

RD: Looks like Konopka will try to “acquaint” himself with Buff, but Buff is running around the ring away from Konopka!

Joey: And somehow, despite all this carnage, Dan Carcillo is still in the match.

RD: We still have Carcillo. Konopka chasing Byfuglien.  Steve Downie, Cal Clutterbuck and believe it or not, Marty Brodeur all still in the ring.

(WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO)

Rob: IS THAT!?

Joey: IT CAN’T BE!! (more…)

We all know who the best players have been the best in the NHL in the 2010-11 season, but who have been some of the worst?  Years ago, I created some “awards” in my old sim league (DCHL), as a semi roast to certain players, GMs and teams.  I took some of these awards,  and created some brand new ones.

First, we start with the Trigger Happy Award, which goes to the GM who has pulled off the most trades in the last year (for the purpose of a starting point, I used 2010’s regular season end to this regular season’s end).  With 18 counted trades, including acquiring (and trading) Dennis Wideman, Dale Tallon of the Florida Panthers is our 2011 winner.  The other GM award, the aptly named You Suck Award goes to Ottawa’s Bryan Murray.  Last summer, Murray signed Sergei Gonchar for 3 years and $16 million, and the 37 year old played like he was 57.  The team plummeted to last place and Murray started the firesale, trying to get what he could for many players.  Some of his deals were to rectify mistakes he had made in the summer, and in previous seasons.  All this, while Daniel Alfredsson remained on the team and his value continued to drop.

Moving on to some statistical awards, the winner of the Broad Street Bully Award goes to Islander Zenon Kenopka, who blew away the field in the penalty minute department, finishing with 307.  Kenopka is the first player to break the 300 PIM barrier since Dan Carcillo in 2007-08.   The Greg Millen Trophy for allowing the most goals in the regular season goes to the Colorado Avalanche.  The team allowed a whopping 287 goals, the most since the 06-07 Flyers.  On the topic of goalies, our Red Light Award for worst goalie of the year (minimum of 20 games) is Rick DiPietro.  DiPietro “lead” the league with a 3.44 GAA, had the second worst save percentage at 88.6% and finished with a record of 8-14-4.

The Bettman Trophy for Villain of the Year was no surprise.  Suspended for 21 games this season within two separate incidents, including missing the entire first round of the playoffs, Matt Cooke easily wins the award.

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What’s with players these days?  Is there a lack of respect around the National Hockey League?

Last season, Matt Cooke blindsided Marc Savard with an elbow to the head. Savard is still out seven months after the hit, and will be for the near future. Cooke was at it again on Friday night when he ran Islander goalie Rick DiPietro, not once, not twice, but three times in one game. Fellow agitator Sean Avery caused a debate this past weekend after whacking Maple Leafs defenseman Mike Komisarek in the leg twice.  Cooke was penalized on all three plays, and Avery got off with no punishment.

The always controversial Sean Avery.

Those two incidents followed last week, when Blackhawk defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson boarded Buffalo forward Jason Pominville and was suspended two games.  Two days later against New Jersey, Pominville’s teammate Pat Kaleta headbutted Devils center Travis Zajac.  Kaleta was later fined for the incident.

And now the NHL has made an example of someone, suspending Coyote forward Shane Doan three games for his hit on Anaheim’s Dan Sexton.  Under the new “blindside headshot” rules, Doan is the first player suspended.  The hit was unnecessary as Sexton had already passed the puck up ice well before Doan delivered the hit, so the “separating player from puck” or “he couldn’t stop in time” excuses are out the window.

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