PITTSBURGH (93-7 The Fan) - Pittsburgh Penguins' winger Matt Cooke joins Sportsradio 93-7 The Fan's Vinnie & Cook for an inside look at their playoff series against the Ottawa Senators.
Cooke was pleased to see the Penguins start the series with a convincing 4-1 win.
"We had a great first period," Cooke says. "I think that's the highest level we've gotten to [so far this postseason]. But we didn't stay at that level for the entire game, and that's an area we can improve on."
Many were curious to see if the Senators would still be seeking revenge against Cooke for his role in Erik Karlsson's injury in February.
Cooke didn't think that subplot was an issue in Game 1 at all.
"I really felt that both teams were focused on winning that game," he says. "We've already played against each other once, so any of that stuff that was there before was completely gone. That's the way I think it should be in the playoffs."
As for the Pens' goalie situation, Cooke admits, "all the players feel like we like Marc-Andre Fleury down; and unfortunately, he's taken the brunt of it. But Tomas has come in and done a great job. We've played better since that change was made. We all know that Marc is the starting goalie, and at some point in the playoffs he's going to have to come back in and win games for us."
Cooke also tells why the penalty kill has been so successful, and compares the Senators with the New York Islanders.
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