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Sharks Gameday: Dusty and Buddy

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Today I want to talk about two very different hockey players who made headlines during the past week: Joe Pavelski and Matt Cooke.

Joe Pavelski had an amazing week. He scored eleven points in four Sharks games, leading the team to three victories. Pavelski's scoring has come at a critical time for San Jose, as the team needs to continue winning to keep ahead of the rest of the highly-competitive Pacific division.

During the Sharks' most recent game against the St. Louis Blues, Pavelski appeared to score his first-ever hat trick, but Joe argued that he never touched the puck on one of the goals awarded to him and the goal was eventually correctly attributed to Patrick Marleau.

Matt Cooke tried to kill a guy. He's also previously done all these terrible things. His most recent infraction has gotten him suspended for the rest of the season and the first round of the playoffs, putting his banged-up team down another player for the stretch run and what will most likely be a difficult first-round match-up.

Over the past few seasons no player has been at the center of more controversy than Matt Cooke. He bears more responsibility than any other single player for the league's bad image when it comes to head shots and discipline. He has injured several players with his reckless and malicious play, and is lucky he hasn't killed someone yet.

Joe Pavelski and Matt Cooke couldn't be more different. Here are just a few examples of the differences between them:

- Matt Cooke has 129 penalty minutes. Joe Pavelski only has 22.

- Joe Pavelski plays center. Matt Cooke plays left wing.

- Joe Pavelski helps people with disabilities. Matt Cooke gives people disabilities.

- Joe Pavelski helps old ladies cross the street. Matt Cooke slough-foots them and steals their coin purses.

- Matt Cooke elbows people in the head. Joe Pavelski serves elbow macaroni to homeless veterans.

- Joe Pavelski was named "Nicest Guy" in his high-school year book. Matt Cooke wasn't named anything because they don't have yearbooks in Juvenile Detention Centers.

- Matt Cooke kneed Alex Ovechkin. Joe Pavelski has a niece named Alexis.

- Joe Pavelski buys Girl Scout cookies every year. Matt Cooke isn't allowed within 500 yards of any Girl Scouts.

But wait - there's more!

- Matt Cooke targets heads. Joe Pavelski heads to Target for low prices on quality merchandise.

- Joe Pavelski sacrifices his own goals for the benefit of others. Matt Cooke sacrifices his own goats on a blood-stained altar in the Penguins locker room.

- Matt Cooke gets suspended. Joe Pavelski bought a pair of suspenders as a gift, and it was the best birthday present Patrick Marleau ever received.

- Joe Pavelski tips the Zamboni driver. Matt Cooke trips him.

- Joe Pavelski visits sick kids in the hospital. Matt Cooke does too, but only to laugh and steal their pain medication.

- Matt Cooke is a repeat offender. Joe Pavelski loves watching repeats of The Defenders.

- Joe Pavelski set up a youth hockey rink for underprivileged kids. Matt Cooke runs an unlicensed day care center out of a rusty shack in his backyard.

- Matt Cooke has been disciplined by the league five times. Joe Pavelski has five adorable puppies.

- Joe Pavelski is the NHL player of the week, will set a new career high for points this season, and is a playoff hero. Matt Cooke is an asshole.


Next Game

Calgary Flames
@ San Jose Sharks

Wednesday, Mar 23, 2011, 7:00 PM PDT
HP Pavilion

Complete Coverage >


Prediction: Sharks win 4-2. Kent Huskins registers four points after Joe Pavelski tells the scorers to give all his points to someone less fortunate.