Matt Cooke Suspension 'Warranted,' Says Penguins GM Ray Shero

Typically, when a player is suspended, the team releases a statement about how they disagree but accept the punishment that's been handed out to their player. Following Matt Cooke's lengthy suspension on Monday for his hit on Rangers' defenseman Ryan McDonagh, the Pittsburgh Penguins are taking a much different tune.

Via the team website, here's what general manager Ray Shero had to say:

"The suspension is warranted because that's exactly the kind of hit we're trying to get out of the game. Head shots have no place in hockey. We've told Matt in no uncertain terms that this kind of action on the ice is unacceptable and cannot happen. Head shots must be dealt with severely, and the Pittsburgh Penguins support the NHL in sending this very strong message."    

In the aftermath of Mario Lemieux's comments about the NHL's lack of discipline in mid-February, it's not like the Penguins had any choice but to agree with this suspension of Cooke. He's everything that Lemieux railed against when he blasted the NHL's handling of the melee between Pittsburgh and the New York Islanders last month, and any disagreement with this suspension would have been a clear contradiction of that. 

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