First, it was Ulf Samuelsson, then it was Matt Cooke and now Buffalo Sabres’ goon and all around punk John Scott has now become one of the most hated opponents for the Bruins. Last night’s cheapshot to Loui Eriksson knocked Eriksson out of the game in the third period. Scott is looking at a suspension, something Cooke didn’t get for his hit on Marc Savard, after receiving a game misconduct.
While Scott is already facing a meeting with the league’s Department of Player Safety, meeting time unknown, this is not the first time John Scott has been a menace out on the ice and it certainly won’t be the last.
Bruins fans might already know John Scott from a fight last season with Shawn Thornton. Not only did Scott defeat Thornton in the fight, but he also gave him a concussion for his troubles. While it wasn’t a cheapshot, it still drew the ire from Bruins fans.
You can’t help to think about Marc Savard after last night. Scott’s hit was very similar to Cooke’s hit on Savard. Both led in with the elbow and both targeted the head. Savard’s hit was pretty much the start of the end of his career and Matt Cooke became one of the most hated players in Bruins lore. Although Cooke has changed his game somewhat, if you ask any Bruins fan, they’ll tell you that Matt Cooke is one of the dirtiest players ever. John Scott may now just add his name on that list. It’s too early to tell if Eriksson will end up like Savard, but you can’t help but think after last night.
Scott is a big man standing in at 6’8″ and 270 pounds and is an intimidating figure on the ice. Only a handful of players can match his size which gives him a huge advantage, but it also creates some problems for Scott as well. Any hit that Scott lays on smaller players will be huge hits and that’s all fine and well, but once you target the head like Scott does, it’s a completely different story. Scott’s size and hitting power could do some serious damage to a player’s head, just ask Loui Eriksson if he’s still not dazed.
Scott makes his bread and butter as an enforcer, in fact that’s the only reason he still has a job with the Buffalo Sabres. The Sabres signed him last season in an effort to make the team tougher. Scott has played in 180 career NHL games, with four different teams in parts of seven seasons, and has only recorded five points, zero since the 2011-12 season with the Chicago Blackhawks. Scott has only one career goal and that was way back in the 2009-10 season as a member of the Minnesota Wild, but he has amassed a total of 319 penalty minutes.
A Bully and A Career Criminal
John Scott is not a hockey player, but rather a neighborhood bully who steals your lunch and makes you do his homework every night. Every team needs an enforcer, but at least other enforcers have some type of skill on the ice. Scott only averages three and a half minutes of ice time a game and he just bullies players during that time. Matt Cooke at least has some sort of talent other than fighting and laying out cheapshots. John Scott just plain can’t do it.
So, simply put, John Scott will not change his ways. He can’t. Like a career criminal, it’s all they know how to do. It’s the only way he is still playing hockey at the NHL level.
The Bruins-Sabres rivalry has been at a fever pitch for a couple of seasons now since Milan Lucic’s hit on Sabres’ goaltender Ryan Miller, but when they meet on the ice again, you can count on either Thornton or Gregory Campbell to target Scott on the ice, presuming he’s not suspended for another infraction.
Mark Wallace Graham has been a writer for TheHockeyWriters.com since March 2013. Growing up in New England, Boston Bruins hockey was in my blood. Follow me on Twitter, @MarkWGraham