EJ is not a fan or Cooke. He raised the question that many fans have been asking: does Cooke belong in the NHL?
But Cooke crossed the line, the league ruled, by sticking out his knee to clip Barrie in open ice early in the second period. Barrie, who ducked to his right in attempt to avoid the collision, tumbled over in immediate pain. He suffered a medial collateral ligament injury to his left knee and will need four to six weeks to recover.
"I think everyone is pretty informed on what he does out there and what he’s done in the past, and I think that speaks for itself," Avalanche defenceman Erik Johnson said Wednesday before the punishment was levied. "There’s no place for that in the game. Look at the guy who he hit: one of our top ‘D.’ He’s going to be out for the foreseeable future."
Added Johnson: "I don’t even know if there’s a place for him in this game. It’s disgusting what he’s done to guys’ careers."
This is Cooke’s sixth career suspension for various player safety violations, bringing his total of games banned to 34, including playoffs. He has also been fined four times. Four of his suspensions came between 2008 and 2011, his first three years with Pittsburgh, but since vowing to change his style his penalty minutes have dropped sharply. This was his first banishment in more than three years, meaning he wasn’t considered a repeat offender according to the collective bargaining agreement.
Patrick Kane scored his second goal of the game at 11:17 of overtime, and the Chicago Blackhawks beat the St. Louis Blues 4-3 on Wednesday night to even their first-round playoff series at two games apiece.
Kane carried the puck down the left side as teammates Ben Smith and Brandon Saad rushed toward the net, and beat Ryan Miller with a well-placed wrist shot for his 32nd career post-season goal.
Andrew Shaw and Bryan Bickell also scored for defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago, which blew a 2-0 second-period lead. Jonathan Toews had two assists and Corey Crawford made 30 saves.
Game 5 of the best-of-seven series is Friday night in St. Louis.
This is a cool video... every Stanley Cup celebration since '49!