AOL News has a new home! The Huffington Post.

Click here to visit the new home of AOL News!

Hot on HuffPost:

See More Stories

No Suspension for Matt Cooke

Mar 10, 2010 – 3:10 PM
Text Size
Adam Gretz

Adam Gretz %BloggerTitle%

After almost three days of debate and frame-by-frame analysis, the NHL ruled on Wednesday afternoon that Penguins forward Matt Cooke will not be suspended for his hit on Boston's Marc Savard.

Savard, who suffered a grade II concussion as a result of the play, could be out for the remainder of the regular season, which of course is a huge loss for a Boston team that is already one of the worst offensive clubs in the league. Cooke has already been suspended once this season, receiving a two-game banishment for a hit on New York Rangers forward Artem Anisimov.

The non-suspension of Cooke is sure to draw mixed reviews. On one hand, there's no question it's a very dangerous hit, but according to the current (emphasis on current) rules, it's not really illegal -- even though many, including yours truly, think it should be. Plus, Philadelphia's Mike Richards escaped suspension for a nearly identical hit on Florida's David Booth, which resulted in a similar injury as well as Booth being sidelined for months of the NHL season and losing a likely spot on the U.S. Olympic team.

While Cooke and Richards avoided punishment this season, players that deliver such crushing blows to the head likely won't be as fortunate in future seasons. On Wednesday, NHL general managers unanimously agreed on a proposal that would penalize any "lateral, back pressure or blindside hit to an opponent where the head is targeted."

Such a hit would result in a penalty and, of course, be reviewed for additional punishment.

The Penguins and Bruins will be facing off on Thursday, March 18, in Boston in what is sure to be a polite, friendly game.
Filed under: Sports