by PuckStopsHere on 04/23/14 at 11:50 PM ET
There has been a significant suspension in the playoffs already. Matt Cooke of the Minnesota Wild has been suspended for seven games for a kneeing incident that put Tyson Barrie of the Colorado Avalanche out of the playoffs. Should Minnesota not last seven more games in the 2014 playoffs, the suspension will be completed at the beginning of next season. The incident occurred in Monday's game three of the Colorado/Minnesota series that Minnesota won 1-0 in overtime.
Cooke is no stranger to being suspended. This is his sixth NHL suspension. It is his first since a 17 game suspension he served for a headshot to Ryan McDonagh of the New York Rangers in 2011. It was widely reported that Cooke changed his style of play after that suspension to better conform to NHL rules. In fact some misguided people suggested that Cooke should win the 2012 Masterton Trophy for changing his style of play. That would have been a ridiculous result. Matt Cooke wins an award for not getting suspended that season. That is a feat that hundreds of players accomplish annually.
Matt Cooke is showing us that leopards do not change their spots. His suspension should surprise no one. Even those who supported him for the Masterton Trophy cannot be surprised right now. His seven game suspension is about right given his crimes.
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