8-10 games a possibility
The Penguins in all likely hood will be playing without winger Matt Cooke for most, if not all of the regular season.
Cooke put his team in another tough spot this afternoon against the New York Rangers, receiving a 5-minute major for elbowing and a game misconduct in the third period of today’s game when the score was tied 1-1.
The Rangers went on to defeat the Penguins 5-2, behind four third period goals, including two power play goals in the third.
In a dirty play, Cooke delivered an elbow to the jaw of Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh and being a repeat offender and on the heels of the GM meetings, Cooke is in big trouble with the league.
It would be a shock if Cooke receives anything less than six games and it’s expected that Cooke and his agent Pat Morris will be called in for a face-to-face meeting in Toronto with the league.
With the Penguins playing tomorrow night, a meeting will likely happen tomorrow morning.
The Penguins are among the teams who were strong supporters of a ban on head shots at the GM meetings last week.
Owner Mario Lemieux even proposed that teams be fined a significant amount of money based on the number of games a player is suspended.
The Penguins have continued to support Cooke’s antics, coming to Cooke’s aid during his recent four game suspension.
The league will look to make an example of Cooke and an 8-to-10 game suspension is considered a real possibility by those around the league.