Note there are only three people there

Matt Cooke is having a renaissance of sorts this season. His point totals are roughly the same, but you’ll note that he only has 20 penalty minutes to this point in the season. This is the same Matt Cooke who, one year ago, had been suspended for barely more games than he had actually scored in. He became the face of everything wrong with the modern game. A simple goon who added no value to his team and badly injured key players of other teams.

Fast forward one season and Cooke has been a productive two way player and kept himself out of the doghouse. Those of you who have been watching Cooke this season have been just as shocked with his turnaround as I have, I’m sure.

Today Cooke made some Penguins history as he became the first Pittsburgh player since Mario Lemieux in 1988 to score a shorthanded goal with two guys in the penalty box. It’s official folks, Matt Cooke has erased Mario Lemieux from the books as the most recent holder of a record distinction. Now is the time to head into your improvised bomb shelters.

Look at Cooke’s shorthanded, breakaway beauty.

If nothing else, it’s nice to see Cooke turn his career around a year after he had people clamoring for his forceful removal from professional hockey. It’s a little bizarre to see him in the headlines for things that don’t involve suspensions and controversy, but it’s refreshing to say the least. By all accounts, Cooke is a great guy off the ice and it’s nice to see his on ice play reflect that.

Keep it rolling, Matt.