BOSTON — The anticipation and the build-up leading into Thursday night’s Bruins-Sabres game was undeniable. Much of that surrounded the possibility of some hand-to-hand combat between two increasingly bitter rivals.
However, not much came of that, aside from one quick first-period scrap that might leave the Bruins without one of their toughest players moving forward.
Shawn Thornton was the one who ended up answering the bell and taking on new Buffalo enforcer John Scott. The two tough guys wasted no time in their first shifts on the ice together, dropping the gloves and throwing punches before the puck even hit the ice at 2:53 of the first period.
Thornton, giving six inches and more than 50 pounds to the journeyman heavyweight in the white shorts with blue trim, was served a steady diet of right hands from Scott. The bout didn’t last long, but the damage was clearly done.
Thornton served his fighting major, but once his five minutes were up, he headed directly for the B’s bench, we...