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John Scott is ‘fine’ with Kessel suspension

Sep 25, 2013, 12:53 PM EDT

John Scott and Phil Kessel Getty Images

To all those who were apoplectic at the NHL’s decision to give Phil Kessel nothing more than a preseason vacation as punishment for Sunday’s stick-swinging episode in Toronto, if it makes any difference, the guy Kessel attacked — or defended himself against, depending how you saw it — has no issue with it.

“I’m fine with it,” Sabres forward John Scott said, per the Buffalo News’ Mike Harrington. “It’s one of those things he’s just protecting himself.”

Not only was Scott accepting of the NHL’s ruling, he “was actually pretty apologetic” on the ice, according to Leafs forward David Clarkson, who, of course, left Toronto’s bench to protect Kessel, drawing an automatic 10-game suspension in the process.

Yesterday, Clarkson expressed regret for his actions in the melee.

And just to put a bow on this “everyone’s sorry about what happened” story, Kessel admitted that the second slash he gave Scott was “uncalled for.”

  1. mp1131211 - Sep 25, 2013 at 1:00 PM

    This is a great preseason! :)

  2. ibieiniid - Sep 25, 2013 at 1:01 PM

    This goes against everything I know about division rivalries. We’ll see what happens the next time these two teams step on the ice together.

    • bauxjangles - Sep 25, 2013 at 3:13 PM

      Who would have thought that a leafs/sabers game would be the one to watch, but I’m betting its going to get national tv coverage

    • Lupy Nazty Philthy - Sep 25, 2013 at 3:54 PM

      I love that the next meeting is a home and home too. Should be great.

  3. ajpowers2987 - Sep 25, 2013 at 2:24 PM

    Yeah scott looks super serious….His right hand is wide open unless one of the baddest dudes in hockey is gonna slap around that drama queen kessel i dont see any reason to have to go axe man on him. Kessel is COWARD

    • hockeyflow33 - Sep 25, 2013 at 2:38 PM


      • ibieiniid - Sep 25, 2013 at 2:44 PM

        axe man, axe man. don’t you get it? axe man.

        idk what he’s saying either…. or how 2 thumbs-uppers understood him. assuming they’re reacting to “drama queen kessel.”

      • hockeyflow33 - Sep 25, 2013 at 2:50 PM

        I don’t know how you call him a coward either for not wanting to get your face smashed in by a guy who is nearly a foot taller than you. Getting punched in the face hurts, a lot, especially when it’s someone who does it for a living. I’d want no part of it either.

      • timmyp716 - Sep 25, 2013 at 3:54 PM

        axe man……you know… the way in which kessel was swinging his stick around looking like he was trying to chop down scott like he was a tree,instead of throwing fists he was swinging sticks

      • hockeyflow33 - Sep 25, 2013 at 8:42 PM

        Does he mean a lumberjack?

    • Lupy Nazty Philthy - Sep 25, 2013 at 3:55 PM

      Go let a 6’8, 270 pound man slap you as hard as he can… let us know how that goes.

      • bauxjangles - Sep 26, 2013 at 12:25 AM

        I don’t see the absolute need to defend his actions. What about the slashing in the previous games that Shannahan mentioned? It’s a dirty move and its not even debatable. Only Leafs fans would defend their player acting like this. Such blind loyalty. I’d be embarrassed if a player on my team pulled this.

      • Lupy Nazty Philthy - Sep 26, 2013 at 12:43 AM

        Kessel did the crime and got 3 games for it. So what if it doesn’t overlap into the regular season. If he actually did any damage than sure, punish the guy, but it was nothing. The 2nd slash didn’t even connect, and the spear was had nothing behind it, he touched the blade of his stick to the top of his pants to taunt him.

      • Lupy Nazty Philthy - Sep 26, 2013 at 12:46 AM

        I’d be embarrassed if someone on my team did what Scott did too. Buffalo fans are proud of their goon.

        He could have avoided the whole thing by fighting Devane in the first place, but Scott doesn’t fight real fighters. or he gets schooled. So, he let Tropp take the hit.

    • sunderlanding - Sep 25, 2013 at 5:30 PM

      Kessel isn’t a coward. Some big dude tries to sucker-punch you you hit them in the fact with your stick. Kessel was a gentleman.

      • bauxjangles - Sep 26, 2013 at 1:42 PM

        A gentleman? You clearly need to broaden your vocabulary because that’s the absolute wrong word to describe a guy that does that. You had to have said that to get a reaction because that is just soooo far off.

      • sunderlanding - Sep 26, 2013 at 2:13 PM

        Someone twice your size tries to suckerpunch you and you do what you need to get him back. If you have a stick in your hands you use it. Like I said if that was me I would’ve hit him in the face.

      • rcbreezy1972 - Sep 26, 2013 at 4:37 PM

        Omg. Your an idiot!!

      • sunderlanding - Sep 26, 2013 at 4:40 PM

        Says the person who thinks “OMG” is a sentence.

    • imleftcoast - Sep 25, 2013 at 6:26 PM

      “he’s just protecting himself.” that is pretty bada$$.

  4. titansbro - Sep 25, 2013 at 2:29 PM

    John Scott is a buffoon. Not a lick of hockey skill. He’s out there to hurt people. So when he goes after your star player you can’t take the time to determine his intent. You gotta protect your guy.

    • hockeyflow33 - Sep 25, 2013 at 2:39 PM

      So your telling me there is a hockey player in the best hockey league in the world who doesn’t have any hockey skills? I’m not sure how that makes any sense.

      • Lupy Nazty Philthy - Sep 25, 2013 at 3:12 PM

        Being too big for 99% of the players in the league is not a “skill”. Scott is useless otherwise. He’s a goon, nothing more.

        If he was an enforcer he would have went after Jamie Devane, the guy who knocked Tropp out, not Kessel. Going after star players is as bush league as bush league gets.

        Kessel got three games, which is more than enough. Leaf-haters can cry me a river about it only being preseason games. Scott was the one who started the entire brawl and he got nothing. Says a lot about how serious the league is on cracking down on “instigators”.

      • joey4id - Sep 25, 2013 at 10:08 PM

        Hockeyflow33, there is a difference between a goon and an enforcer. Scott can be considered as a goon whereas a player like Chris Niel in Ottawa is an enforcer. The enforcer not only fights when appropriate, but he can also take a regular shift and has more skills than the so called goon. But! Since you play the game who probably know this and a lot more.

      • hockeyflow33 - Sep 25, 2013 at 11:14 PM

        True, and based off your posts, you should sit back in the shadows and just allow myself and several other commenters on here to educate you about the sport.

    • bauxjangles - Sep 25, 2013 at 3:15 PM

      Yeah, whereas Kessel is great with his stick. He can even use it to score goals sometimes.

  5. amityvillefun - Sep 25, 2013 at 3:35 PM

    Kessel is a PUKE. Complete coward. No wonder nobody in the Bruins locker room liked him and Ovechkin taunted him when he was selected last at the All-Star game.

    A brave man dies a single death; a coward dies a thousand.

    Enjoy your multiple deaths Mr. Kessel. Enjoy your nightmares over playing Buffalo….because the boogeyman is coming to get you!

    • Lupy Nazty Philthy - Sep 25, 2013 at 3:52 PM

      LOL, Leafs have at least three players who can mop the floor with John Scott. If Buffalo wants to play rough, the Leafs will happily comply. Not sure what you think Buffalo has that is so tough, but there’s not much to be scared of.

      • timmyp716 - Sep 25, 2013 at 3:58 PM

        which three would they be?i only ask because i havent seen anyone on the leafs that can……..minus colton orr’s kidney shot last year

      • Lupy Nazty Philthy - Sep 25, 2013 at 6:16 PM

        Orr, McLaren or Fraser would happily smack him around. Jamie Devane probably could too. You know, the guy Scott was on the ice at the same time as, but wussed out and let Tropp take on? Yes Scott skipping the tough guy to go after a little guy… I’ll try to act shocked.

        What is Scott’s claim to toughness that the Sabres fans are all bragging about again? Beating up a 36 yr old Shawn Thornton? Ooooh! Wow. That must have been a doozy.

  6. Lupy Nazty Philthy - Sep 25, 2013 at 3:40 PM

    Scott is a wuss. Of course he has to go after little guys like Kessel. We all know what happens when he fights a REAL tough guy.

    • ibieiniid - Sep 25, 2013 at 4:24 PM

      Kessel doesn’t have the kidney punch in his arsenal.

      • ibieiniid - Sep 25, 2013 at 4:27 PM

        (yeah, i realize it’s hard to punch upwards)

      • Lupy Nazty Philthy - Sep 25, 2013 at 6:10 PM

        Flynn found out what Kessel has in his arsenal. Poor guy.

  7. schusters3 - Sep 25, 2013 at 7:41 PM

    How many times did Stu Grimson pick a fight with Doug Gilmore or McSorley pick a fight Cliff Ronning? Scott’s a douche, not even a competent goon. Punishment completely appropriate.

  8. joshdeitsch - Sep 26, 2013 at 3:27 AM

    I am not usually one to post my thoughts online, but I am disgusted by what I saw and what I am hearing about the incident involving Phil Kessel.
    It is ridiculous to me that someone would ever say that it is ok for anyone to intentionally hit someone with a stick regardless of the situation. I am still trying to figure out how the guy who came off the bench to stick up for the little girl ends up suspended for more games than the guy who took a couple chops with his stick. I know it is a rule and it is automatically 10 games, but there is no way that is worse than what Kessel did.

    For those of you who think he didn’t have any outs, he could have
    a-not skated up and pushed Scott,
    B- he could have ran quickly away when he first stopped and turned to slash him,
    c-he could  turtle like the little sissy he is, or
    d-he could grow a pair and stand up like a man and fight.

    Kessel said himself that Scott told him “I’m going to jump you” He should have been smart enough to get away if he was scared.

    Don’t forget that even after he had escaped the initial rush and was in no danger at all he circled around and took a second swing at Scott’s legs. It can no longer be considered self defense, which I believe is a garbage excuse for what Kessel did. Once he was clear of the pile he consciously decided to try again to hurt Scott. There is no other reason to go back in for seconds, and the thirds when after he ended up fighting someone else (remember had he just done that to start with),he picked his stick back up and gave Scott a little spear.

    For those of you who said the Sabres sent their enforcer out to fight the Leafs star players remember the Leafs had last change as the Home Team.

    Lets talk about the fact that I keep hearing that he shouldn’t be suspended any longer because Scott wasn’t injured.
    Whether or not a player is injured as a result of an illegal action should have absolutely zero bearing on the severity of the punishment.
    It is happening far to often now that a , play that appears to be a, legal check results in a penalty and sometimes a suspension, because the recipient of the hit ends up hurt. I don’t want anyone to be injured, but it is hockey and it is rough, and sometimes unfortunately people get hurt. It is a penalty every time.
    In turn it works the other way as well. Just because a guy doesn’t get hurt doesn’t mean there shouldn’t be a suspension.
    I will give you an example.
    Let me preface by saying that I am a Bruins fan and was rooting for the to win the cup. There was an incident in the playoffs where a player I can’t remember poked Brad Marchand in the back on his way to the bench, and he turned and viciously swung his stick at that player. He missed, and did not receive a penalty or any suspension. That is the kind of garbage that needs to be removed from the game. Nobody got hurt but Marchand should have been suspended.
    The penalty is called Intent to Injure, not succeed in injuring.

    There shouldn’t be a double standard for star players and role players. If the roles had been reversed and Scott had taken a swing at Kessel with his stick he would have certainly gotten more than 3 pre season games.
    Here is an example-
    Kassian accidentally hit Gagner in the face with his stick, and got 5 regular season games. Yes I believe he should have been suspended, because a player should always be in control of his stick. However it was unintentional.
    Kessel hit Scott intentionally not 1 but 2 times and then added a little spear, and he only gets 3 meaningless pre season games.
    What is it teaching the kids watching when we allow our star players that they look up to to get away with a slap on the wrist for a couple of nasty slashes.

    Stick swinging and other gutless cheap shots need to be eliminated from the game of hockey. I don’t care who does it, it is gutless and has no place in the game of

    • spiciercheez - Sep 26, 2013 at 2:21 PM

      Do you feel better now?

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