"We think it's great. He's a big part
of our team and it shows the character of Matt to come in and still play his game. He's important because he plays
that in-your-face style."
- Naslund on Matt Cooke
"Imagine a guy like Matt Cooke being the
voice of reason dragging Ed Jovanovski away from taking a retaliation penalty. Talk about strange things happening, but it's
nice to see when it does." -- 4/21/02:
NHL director of hockey operations (and former Canuck) Colin Campbell
pointing out some of the things that happen when a team starts to come together.
"The first one he high-sticked me and I was on the ice and he wanted
to fight. The second one I got my back to him the whole time and he comes in with a punch in the face. I'll protect myself but
I'm going to ask for a fair fight." -- 3/2/02: Matt Cooke of the Vancouver Canucks who was jumped
twice by Minnesota's Jason Marshall.
"Matt Cooke did not bite anyone on the Minnesota Wild," clarified Burke. "But his favorite band is Fine Young Cannibals."
Matt Cooke, agitator:
"When I first turned pro in 1998 I had no desire to wear a visor at all. I couldn't
get it off fast enough. I was aware there was an expectation that people who played my style didn't wear a visor, not that
that bothers me now. I made a decision to put it on when I had a hole in
my mouth that I could stick four fingers through."
"He finishes his check on everyone, no matter who it is, and I don't
think that makes him a dirty player. A hard hit gets looked at like something that needs retribution, and I don't think that's
our game. If you get hit fair and square you should take it like a man."
-- 3/5/02: Canucks' assistant general manager Dave Nonis commenting on the suggestion that Cooke is a dirty player.