The Capitals are not in the Stanley Cup playoffs, but a handful of former Caps are.
One of them, Minnesota Wild bad boy Matt Cooke, is about to be booted from them, at least temporarily, for his knee-on-knee hit on Colorado Avalanche defenseman Tyson Barrie in the Wild’s 1-0 win Monday night.
Cooke faces an in-person hearing, which could mean a minimum of five games.
Cooke has been suspended by the NHL six times for a total of 32 games in his career, which includes a brief 17-game stay in Washington in 2007-08.
As a repeat offender, Cooke could face a lengthy suspension from the NHL, especially since his hit resulted in an MCL sprain that is expected to keep Barrie out of the lineup 4-6 weeks.
It’s been two years since Cooke was last suspended – a 10-game ban plus the first round of the playoffs – for throwing an elbow at Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh.
“I’m confident the league will do the right thing,” Avalanche president Joe Sakic told Adrian Dater of the Denver Post.
In three games for the Wild, Cooke has one assist, is a minus-1, with 6 penalty minutes, 2 shots, 16:27 of average icetime and a 33.3 faceoff percentage.
Here’s a quick look at other former Capitals participating in the playoffs:
Cody Eakin, center, Dallas Stars: 3 games, 2 assists, even, 18:09 average ice time, 7 shots, 36.7 faceoff percentage.
Mathieu Perreault, center, Anaheim Ducks: 3 games, 1 power-play goal, even, 2 penalty minutes, 12:54 average ice time, 53.6 faceoff percentage.
Sergei Gonchar, defenseman, Dallas Stars: 3 games, 0 pts, minus-1, 4 penalty minutes, 4 shots, 13:46 average ice time.
Scott Hannan, defenseman, San Jose Sharks: 2 games, 0 points, plus-3, 2 shots, 16:37 average ice time.
Semyon Varlamov, goaltender, Colorado Avalanche: 2-1-1, 2.21 GAA, .937 save percentage, 189:32 ice time.