Found October 25, 2013 on The PensNation:
Buffalo_sabres_v_546d
By: Rich Miller (@pensbender) This is pretty straight forward, right?  John Scott is a statue on skates and is basically as one-dimensional as they come in today’s NHL.  In 187 career games, he’s tallied five points.  Five.  It’s counterproductive, yet punch throwers and cheap-shot artists like Scott continue to take roster spots away from guys who can actually play hockey.  Guys who may be capable of actually doing something entertaining.  Does anyone really want to see Loui Erickson, who is a pretty fun player to watch, have his head bounce off the ice like a basketball? The argument for so called enforcers hanging around for their usual five minutes of ice time every night is so their presence can protect the more talented players.  Ultimately, what you end up with is criminals like Scott policing the other John Scott’s of the world.  The whole premise is completely backward and the argument is dumb.  There is a difference between guys who go out and play a tenacious brand of hockey every night, and the others who cash paychecks based on their reputations of not being afraid to drop gloves.  This isn’t about fighting though, this is about the players who consistently fail to play within the rules of the game.  Furthermore, despite being a noted fighter Shawn Thornton’s meaningless presence in the lineup for Boston did nothing to prevent this hit from taking place. The league has taken some steps in the right direction.  This much is true.  The system as a whole has come a very long way from where it was just a few years ago.  Brendan Shanahan is dishing out suspensions like free meals this season, yet every night it seems we all fond ourselves wasting more time reviewing and debating dirty hits. Last night, Benoit Pouliot on Max Talbot…   This one may be more careless than malicious, but the end result is still the same.  Pouliot is out of control when he leans on Talbot sending him face first into the boards.  If Pouliot was smart he would have cutoff Talbot’s angle up the ice by playing the puck, not the body.  The league can suspend as many players as they want, and guys like Scott and Patrick Kaleta (who has been suspended six times in the last four seasons) will eventually run out rope to hang themselves with, but the fact remains that the message still is not being completely received across the league.  There is still a problem. What we’ve grown accustomed to is the league making up the rules as it goes along.  Ultimately things have gotten better, but there is still variations of grey within the interpretation and application of rules and discipline.  There is a certain level of discretion that needs to be taken into account on a case-to-case basis, especially regarding long-term suspensions.  But if the league is going to talk about player safety then it truly needs to own it, beginning with the referees acting the moment an illegal hit occurs.  Major penalties and a game misconducts shouldn’t even be a question.  The league can dish-out the suspensions accordingly, but too many calls are blown on the ice to say the problem entirely revolves around the legislation. Players can change and they deserve a chance too.  The Matt Cooke story is a great one.  But when there is a consistent behavior of veering away from the rule book by a player, then the player and the team should be held accountable.  It is as much on the team to control the actions of their players on the ice as it is on the player to control themselves.  Is it a coincidence that Scott and Kaleta both play for the 1-9-1 Buffalo Sabres?  If the argument is that these guys are there to protect the stars, then Tomas Vanek must feel bulletproof.  The difference is that perennial jokes like the Buffalo Sabres continue to believe there is value in parading the “tough guys” out on to the ice each night.  They’re wrong.  They’re so wrong that they made Steve Ott assistant captain of the circus. It’s time the league turns it up a notch, not on the players, because that clearly is not working, but on the teams who continue to roster the repeat offenders.  The problem between the players is nothing more than respect.  The guys who are playing reckless do not respect the guys they are hitting; it’s that simple.  If you’re the league, what you can do is make them lose the respect of their teammates by penalizing the team as a whole.  The league could even do a lot more than that, actually.  Lost draft picks, heavy fines, extended penalties, and lost roster spots are all options to choose from. It’s time the no-talent sideshows find their way out of the game.  Common sense and respect for others players continues to somehow go by the wayside, it’s only a matter of time before the consequences of this hit an unparalleled level.  Plain and simple, the game is better when the guys who can actually play the game, can actually play the game, and nobody wants to see someone die. A Look Around The Metro Still bad, but a little better this week coming in with a combined record of 28-36-10. Pittsburgh (14 points):  Olli Maatta.  Also, Kris Letang’s hair returns to the ice tonight against the NY Islanders. Carolina (11 points):  Well, they WERE on to something here.  Injuries absolutely killed them last season, but this season they had been healthy and finding ways to earn points.  Unfortunately though, they lost Cam Ward, Jeff Skinner, and Ryan Murphy in last nights 3-1 loss to Minnesota.  Backup Jason Peters allowed goals on the first two shots he face, yikes.  They play Colorado tonight. Washington (10 points):  The power play is good.  At even strength they’re bad.  Their penalty kill has been really good, but their goaltending has been really bad.  Hence the 5-5 record with 30 goals for and 30 goals against. s/t Jaspers Rink NY Islanders (9 points): Like Carolina, the Isles are earning points via OT losses.  The encouraging news is John Tavares has points in eight straight games.  Matt Moulson is on a four game scoring streak with five points (three goals, two assists) in his last two games.  Their power play has been really good with a 28.1% success rate.  Like last year, however, the Isles can’t play a consistent 60 minute game because their defense is garbage and their depth is less than good.  The John Spano story on 30 for 30 this week put some perspective on how embarrassing this franchise operated in the past.  Credit Spano with getting Mike Milbury out of town however, realistically that may have been their first step in the right direction. They will get a great test tonight in Pittsburgh; never forget Nabokov. Columbus (8 points):  This is probably the most difficult team in this division to gauge.  Some in Columbus do not want Brandon Dubinsky to be the captain.  I’m holding out an opinion on them until they show some signs of consistency or at least until things like this stop happening. s/t Russian Machine Never Breaks New Jersey (6 points):  This team is bad and Corey Schneider is deservingly starting in net more than Martin Brodeur.  Brodeur is apparently handling it professionally, for now. “Over the last three years, I haven’t played as many games.  It’s somewhat of a transition, but definitely it’s not fun. You don’t play hockey, especially at the age I am, to just sit on the bench and hang out. It was fun in practice on Wednesday. I had a blast. But ask me that in two months. I don’t know if I’ll say the same thing.” – Brodeur NY Rangers (4 points):  They fell into the Philadelphia trap of playing “their” game not “ours” last night in a 2-1 loss.  I still think this team is better than they’ve shown.  Henrik Lundqvist has a minor undisclosed injury, but there is no way he comes back playing as bad as he was.  Either way, they aren’t playing well right now and it really doesn’t matter who’s in net. Philadelphia (4 points):  Max Talbot is a tough dude.  This was his face after eating the boards last night on the hit delivered by Pouliot. Talbot returned to the game, which the Flyers won.  The win marked their second on the season, for some reason Paul Holmgren’s job isn’t in jeopardy though. Around The League The Winter Classic:  Will once again be chronicled in the weeks leading up to the game by HBO and their tremendous 24/7 beginning December 14.  Should be fun to watch Randy Carlyle talk about how much he hates statistics. Tampa:  What are you doing?   Florida Panthers:  Until December 23, if and when the Panthers win,  single game ticket buyers attending that game will receive tickets for the next game free of charge.  Considering their win total and current attendance, it’s hard to say how many people will actually benefit from this, but it’s a nice gesture nonetheless. David Clarkson:  Will make his season debut tonight in Columbus after serving a 10-game suspension for leaving to bench to fight none other than John Scott. “We think that he can make a contribution, but we don’t want to put too much pressure on him, he hasn’t played in a while. We just want him to do the simple things, be David Clarkson and make the simple, strong play.” – coach Randy Carlyle This shouldn’t be that hard since there in nothing that isn’t simple about Clarkson’s game. Dan Boyle:  Isn’t taking Max Lapierre’s calls.  And he shouldn’t. “He left a message. I think it’s been documented that I didn’t take the call. I’ll leave it at that for now.” – Boyle Surprised Lapierre even knows how to use a telephone. Pekka Rinne:  Is going to miss a month with a hip infection. Patrick Kaleta:  Had his 10-game suspension upheld.  If the NHL really wanted to penalize the Sabres, they would force them to play Kaleta 20 minutes every night. Everything you need to know about tonight’s games here. Go Pens.      
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

Don Cherry defends John Scott

Don Cherry has made some ridiculous comments over the years. Controversial statements from Cherry are the norm. You can add some more to his resume as he has now taken a firm and unbelievable stance defending Buffalo's John Scott.  On his Hockey Night in Canada segment, Cherry defended Scott and believes Scott's actions were due to limited time on the ice. Due to his...

WATCH: John Scott ejected from game after head shot on Eriksson

Sabres enforcer John Scott is going to get a call from the NHL’s Department of Player Safety for his vicious head shot on Bruins forward Loui Eriksson during the third period of Wednesday night’s game in Buffalo. After Eriksson passed the puck up ice to a teammate, Scott skated toward him from the side and delivered a hard hit with the head being the principal point of contact...

John Scott: ‘I Was Sick to My Stomach’ After Loui Eriksson Hit, Adds ‘I Have a Role’

For those of you who were hoping for something bad to happen to Buffalo’s buffoon John Scott on Wednesday night, you got your wish. Big John had a tummy ache following his disgusting head-hunting elbow on Bruins forward Loui Eriksson. Scott, who tried to decapitate the B’s winger during Boston’s 5-2 win, spoke to the media on Thursday regarding the ugly play that earned him...

John Scott's a ******* Joke

  There's no point to John Scott. Seriously. The guy has five career points in 180 games and never finishing with a positive plus/minus rating. Dude hasn't scored a goal since '09-'10 season.  And for the people ready to talk about fighters, there's a huge difference between enforcer and a goon, and John Scott is captain of the latter.  Guy can barely...

Sabres forward Scott to have hearing Oct. 31

Buffalo Sabres left wing John Scott will have a hearing with the NHL Department of Player Safety on Thursday, Oct. 31 for a hit on Boston Bruins forward Loui Eriksson during the game Oct. 23 at First Niagara Center. Scott was offered the opportunity for an in-person hearing as required by provisions of the Collective Bargaining Agreement for any suspension that can exceed five games...

John Scott delivers brutal cheap shot elbow to the head of Loui Eriksson

  The Bruins and Sabres faced off on Wednesday night as a part of NHL Rivalry Night, and Buffalo’s John Scott earned himself an early exit from the game in the third period with this brutal cheap shot to the head of Boston’s Loui Eriksson. Scott clearly targets the head of Eriksson and delivers a high elbow at mid-ice. Scott was ejected while Eriksson appeared to be very shaken...

John Scott suspended indefinitely for blind hit on Loui Eriksson

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Buffalo Sabres enforcer John Scott was suspended indefinitely by the NHL on Thursday. And teammate Patrick Kaleta‘s appeal to reduce his 10-game suspension was denied by league commissioner Gary Bettman. Scott was suspended pending a disciplinary hearing for a blindside hit to the head that leveled Boston Bruins forward Loui Eriksson in Buffalo’s 5-2 loss a...

John Scott Has In-Person Hearing with NHL For Illegal Hit on Bruins’ Loui Eriksson

John Scott has been suspended indefinitely by the NHL for his illegal hit to the head on Boston Bruins forward Loui Eriksson from Wednesday’s game in Buffalo, and now he will meet with the league’s Department of Player Safety for an in-person hearing. John Scott in-person hearing on Thursday for Illegal Check to the Head of Loui Eriksson.— NHL Player Safety (@NHLPlayerSafety...

John Scott’s at it again

The MetroWest Daily News's Dan Cagen points us toward a video in which we get to witness the latest suspension-worthy infraction from Buffalo Sabres forward John Scott, who very purposefully elbowed Boston Bruisn forward Loui Eriksson in the face:

GARTH'S CORNER: Scott Reaction

As the lyric from the title song from the '70s thriller "The Poseidon Adventure" goes, "there has to be a morning after". John Scott spoke after the Sabres practiced today.

Hurricanes say Cam Ward will miss 3-4 weeks

The Carolina Hurricanes got some bad news, Cam Ward will miss three to four weeks, this per the Raleigh News & Observer’s Chip Alexander. The team has recalled Mike Murphy, so if they don’t make another move, Murphy will split time with Justin Peters for the foreseeable future. Health wise, the Cane’s cannot get much luck, especially in the goalie department where Justin...

Sabres Hack John Scott Pounds Bruins Forward Loui Eriksson in the Head

Last night, Buffalo Sabres pylon, hack, one-dimensional forward, John Scott hit Boston Bruins forward Loui Eriksson in the head with one of the dirtiest hits I have seen this season. It doesn't appear that the players are learning anything. Scott's teammate Patrick Kaleta is already serving a 10-game suspension for his dirty hit on Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Jack Johnson...

Sabres Once Again Prove They're a Joke Organization. BRUINS WIN!

Been trying to write a good intro but the Scott hit pissed me off too much. Just like every other head shot this season by some goon who shouldn't be in the league. This isn't just about a Bruins player being injured. Scott knew he could do this because the NHL gives less than a **** about player safety. They try to pretend they care by enforcing more rules in fights...

Jack Edwards' Twitter rants are as crazy as his announcing

With the NHL season well underway we're way overdue in checking in on one of our favorite local announcers - Boston Bruins play by play man Jack Edwards.  Let's spin the Jack Edwards Wheel of Insanity and see where we land... [Price is Right Wheel Noise] Crazed Twitter rant it is!  We just narrowly missed out on another Sirhan Sirhan reference. Jacko had to...

Sabres-Lightning Preview

The Tampa Bay Lightning have been quick to bounce back from disappointment this season, sometimes within the same game. It hasn't been as easy for the Buffalo Sabres, who hope a rare victory will help them begin a climb from the Atlantic Division basement. Tampa Bay seeks a fourth win in five tries as it hosts Buffalo on Saturday night. The Lightning (6-3-0) have yet to lose...
NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.