Erik Karlsson injury: Karlsson says Cooke incident wasn't intentional, but wasn't accidental
In his first press conference after suffering a season-ending Achilles' tendon laceration after he was hit by Matt Cooke, Erik Karlsson suggested that even though Cooke wasn't likely trying to, Cooke "[knew] exactly what he's doing out there."
Ottawa Senators defenceman Erik Karlsson made some waves on Friday morning, suggesting that it wasn't an accident when Matt Cooke sliced his Achilles' tendon. Quotes from the presser was posted to Twitter by many Ottawa beat writers, including NHL.com's Erin Nicks:
Karlsson did not reply to Cooke's text. "I didn't think much of it. I didn't have much to say to him." #Sens— Erin Nicks (@erinnicks) February 22, 2013
"Cooke knows exactly what he's doing out there." #Sens— Erin Nicks (@erinnicks) February 22, 2013
Karlsson: "I stand behind (Eugene Melnyk) and his comments." #Sens— Erin Nicks (@erinnicks) February 22, 2013
"The puck came around came around the corner, and I had a guy behind me, and I knew exactly who it was, so I was trying to take precaution."— Erin Nicks (@erinnicks) February 22, 2013
"He missed the hit and still got me somehow. I think the situation could have been prevented. I don't think it would have ...."— Erin Nicks (@erinnicks) February 22, 2013
" ... happened if it was another type of player. But I don't think his intention was to cut me with the skate. I refuse to believe that."— Erin Nicks (@erinnicks) February 22, 2013
So basically, if I'm understanding him correctly, Karlsson is suggesting that even though Cooke wasn't intending to maliciously use his skate blade to slice Karlsson's Achilles' tendon, he was recklessly trying to knock Karlsson down and/or out. That's a suggestion others have made, as well.
Of course, any time one player is hitting another player in the NHL, he is trying to knock him down and/or out--especially if that player is the reigning Norris Trophy winner. Whether Cooke was trying to injure Karlsson or simply finishing his check will likely never be known to anyone but Cooke, but it's obvious what Karlsson thinks.
It is expected that the Senators will post a video of the conference on their website shortly. Once that's up, I'll embed it below.