Ray Shero has found his replacement pest for Jarkko Ruutu. Matt Cooke inked a deal today for two-years, worth $1.2 million per to get under the skin of opponents. The 29-year old Ontario native spent all of his career with Vancouver before being traded last February to the Capitals.
Cooke is probably good for 10-13 goals and 70-90 penalty minutes a season.
Shero believes that Cooke can bring a little offense to the party, much like Ruutu was able to do.
"Matt is a versatile forward that will bring grit, energy and experience to our lineup," said Pens general manager Ray Shero. "He is the type of player that adds depth up front and is capable of providing offense for our hockey club."
I'd like to take this time to announce to all Penguins fans that formation of the following fan club, "The Cooke-y Monsters". Having seen a lot of Canucks games over the past few years, Penguin fans will fall in love with him the same way we did with Jarkko Ruutu. He's a pest that will give you 110% every time he's out on the ice. A definitely blue-collar worker, Cooke will quickly become a fan favorite among Pens fans.
Unfortunately, I live in New York and can't get to Mellon on a regular basis. I'm calling upon those Penguin fans who fill the place on forty-one nights a season to bring your banners, get a section together somewhere in the arena, and throw cookies on the ice when he scores a goal. Okay, maybe not the last part, but that'd be pretty cool.
Let's make "The Cooke-y Monsters" a big deal in Pittsburgh. I'll definitely be promoting this more and more once the season comes around and hopefully get a pictures link on here of any folks awesome enough to help get this off the ground. And when I go back to Mellon Arena next season, I'd love to be able to sit in "The Cooke-y Monsters" section and cheer on the Pens.
Here's the Facebook group for "The Cooke-y Monsters".