Don Cherry Calls Mario Lemieux ‘One of the Biggest Phonies,’ Happy Matt Cooke Got His Comeuppance

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Don Cherry Calls Mario Lemieux 'One of the Biggest Phonies,' Happy Matt Cooke Got His Comeuppance In case you weren't aware, Don Cherry isn't shy.

The hockey legend was a guest on Tuesday's Dennis and Callahan Show, and he was rather candid in expressing his opinions regarding Matt Cooke and the Pittsburgh Penguins. Aside from calling Cooke one of the "little rats with visors thinking they're tough," Cherry took exception to co-owner Mario Lemieux's hypocrisy as an outspoken critic of head shots while simultaneously signing Cooke's paychecks.

"Mario Lemieux, one of the biggest phonies I've ever seen, he comes up and what does he do? He says, 'We have to get rid of head shots,'" Cherry said. "And the [CEO/president], Dave Morehouse, 'We have to get rid of head shots.' And then [general manager] Ray Shero, who I really like, says the same thing. … And what happens? They got the head-shot guy of all time, paying his paycheck. What a bunch of hypocrites."

Cherry was referencing Lemieux's statement after his Penguins were involved in a game with the Islanders that featured 342 penalty minutes and resulted in several suspensions.

"If the events relating to [that game] reflect the state of the league, I need to rethink whether I want to be a part of it," Lemieux said at the time.

Cherry hasn't forgotten that statement.

"When you come out and say 'I'm gonna get out of the league,' 'This is terrible,' 'I really have to look at the NHL' and starts knocking the NHL, and then he's signing paychecks for Cooke? I mean, come on. That's ridiculous," Cherry said. "He could've straightened [Cooke] out a long time ago. … Ridiculous."

Watch Cherry's comments on Cooke, Lemieux and the Penguins in the video above, and listen to the full audio by clicking here.

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