Matt Cooke is an excuse. He's just one of a long list of excuses to bad mouth the Penguins by a group of has been's who were left in the wake of Mario. For some reason all these bozos ended up on TV, I guess they figured if you can't beat them on the ice - do it during intermission or post game.
It's somewhat understandable... Lemieux, Jagr, Crosby, Malkin.... once in a generation type players - and they all played here. On top of it - you take a guy like Iginla and add him at the trade deadline for fun. Or a heart and soul captain like Morrow - and take him. How they must hate this organization.
Without Matt Cooke - the talk simply sways to things like hockey gods, tanking for sid, bettman, or some other stupid conspiracy theory. Matt Cooke is tangible - they can slow down a replay of his hit and cry about it all night.. he gives them an excuse.