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Video: 32-year-old rookie Johnson wins fight against much bigger John Scott

Apr 14, 2014, 8:56 AM EDT

Buffalo and the Islanders were eliminated long before they wrapped up the season with New York’s 4-3 shootout win over the Sabres on Sunday. Consequently, it was a game that had very little meaning to the two franchises, but it’s still likely to stick out in at least one player’s mind.

At the age of 32, New York’s Justin Johnson was playing in just his second NHL game and the minor-league enforcer got the opportunity to spar with 6’8″ John Scott. The Sabres forward is about seven inches taller than Johnson and that gap is apparent when the fighters stood face-to-face.

At first it looked like it would be a predictably one-sided brawl, but Johnson battled back and knocked Scott to the ice:

Johnson has five points and 183 penalty minutes in 48 games with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers this season.

Born in Anchorage, Alaska, he’s slowly climbed his way up the ranks. He spent four seasons playing for the University of of Alaska-Anchorage, following by parts of five campaigns in the ECHL. He didn’t even make his AHL debut until 2010-11, but he hasn’t fallen below that level since.

  1. thesportsjudge - Apr 14, 2014 at 9:00 AM

    What a great ending!

  2. dial1911 - Apr 14, 2014 at 9:08 AM

    Fantastic!! Big tree fall hard.

  3. hockey412 - Apr 14, 2014 at 9:09 AM

    This is a great story even if you are a Buffalo fan, I’d wager.

  4. jeffchadwick - Apr 14, 2014 at 9:12 AM

    Anytime someone can land one like that on Scott, I support. Good for the “kid.”

  5. savoirlaire - Apr 14, 2014 at 9:14 AM

    Hard to conceive of a more classless, goon POS who deserved this more than Scott…he can laugh about it after as much as he wants, but Johnson popped him right on the panic button, and down his goon ass went!

    • thomasvanek - Apr 14, 2014 at 10:41 AM

      John Scott has like one dirty hit in his career. And even still I don’t think he purposely hit Loui Eriksson like that. I can think of many bigger POSs’ who deserve it more. Let me name a couple. Lucic, Chara, Marchand, Cooke, Bertuzzi, Kadri, Neal, Varlamov, Subban, Malone,… The list goes on and on. I’m not saying that he isn’t useless because he is. I’m just saying he isn’t dirty, just boneheaded.

      • hockeyflow33 - Apr 14, 2014 at 12:41 PM

        Did you honestly name a goalie as one of the dirtiest players?

      • thomasvanek - Apr 14, 2014 at 2:52 PM

        Sorry for wanting a women beater to get knocked out. Do you support such actions hockeyflow33?

  6. patthehockeyfan - Apr 14, 2014 at 9:15 AM

    I hate fighting. I glanced at the film of this fight shown on The NHL Network this morning – just at the end. I’m ashamed to say that I laughed when Johnson knocked Scott on his ass. oof!

  7. joey4id - Apr 14, 2014 at 9:19 AM

    LOL! “Fantastic!! Big tree fall hard. “Dinosaurs roam no more, and one day enforcers will be extinct as well.

    • caniac4ever - Apr 14, 2014 at 10:25 AM

      You continue to make yourself(and the rest of the anti-fighting crowd) look stupid. Good job. Dude, give it up already and pick a new sport. Tennis, softball, world poker tour, spelling bee?

      • joey4id - Apr 14, 2014 at 10:33 AM

        Too bad you think that way of the greatest hockey minds to have ever graced the NHL. Bowman, Yzerman, Shero, Dryden….. That leaves me in pretty good company. They are all opposed to fighting. Do you think Stevie Y should resign? Clearly he knows nothing. hahahahaha! Too bad you didn’t watch the Olympic hockey games in Sochi. That was some pretty good hockey. Go watch some boxing. You never know, a hockey game might break out. ;-) BTW FU

      • blackhawksdynasty - Apr 14, 2014 at 1:44 PM

        News flash joey: you are not in the same galaxy as the legends you named. You are nobody.

    • caniac4ever - Apr 14, 2014 at 10:57 AM

      So you’re saying the current NHL is the same as boxing? Why aren’t you protesting both sports then? Go ahead and protest lacrosse also.

      • joey4id - Apr 14, 2014 at 11:25 AM

        Is that what I’m saying? I could ask you the same, and why don’t you protest the Olympics? Or, hockey tournaments sanctioned by the IIHF?

    • skr213 - Apr 14, 2014 at 12:01 PM

      On February 24, 2008 at 4:15am, Joey predicted this would happen.

  8. bruinsfan55 - Apr 14, 2014 at 9:23 AM

    Finally someone gave Scott a taste of his own medicine! What a goon he really is though. A real POS

    • hockey412 - Apr 14, 2014 at 9:45 AM

      Wait wait – you think all goons are P’sOS, or just this one?

    • billsin20xx - Apr 14, 2014 at 8:16 PM

      How can a Bruins fan ever talk about POS’s? let me help you with 3 – Lucic, marchand and Chara!!!

  9. storminator16 - Apr 14, 2014 at 9:31 AM

    Good for Johnson. Good on Scott for obliging him there.

  10. sjsharks66 - Apr 14, 2014 at 9:40 AM

    Im surprised Scott’s head stayed on his shoulders after that monstrous left.

  11. ibieiniid - Apr 14, 2014 at 9:42 AM

    it’s so funny to me when two players go to grapple, and they end up holding hands. Rinaldo and somebody else, name escapes me right now, did that a couple weeks ago and it ended in a double hand-hold. was so funny, I had to take a video to make a GIF.

  12. stcrowe - Apr 14, 2014 at 10:29 AM

    I have a feeling that this 32 year old rookie has fought before. Good for him. I am not a huge fan of fighting in hockey, but when it happens, it is nice to see a fearless, smaller guy score a win.

  13. bcisleman - Apr 14, 2014 at 10:42 AM

    Methinks Johnson may become a fan fav at Barclays!

    • 950003cups - Apr 14, 2014 at 11:17 AM

      Isles won’t be in Brooklyn until the 2015/2016 season. He’ll be gone by then.

  14. nhstateline - Apr 14, 2014 at 12:29 PM

    He was a tough kid when he played for Manchester and he still is!!!

  15. hockeyflow33 - Apr 14, 2014 at 12:43 PM

    Scott’s actions after he was hit on the chin did make me like him more. It was funny to see him put his arms up like, “oh well”

  16. 19inarow - Apr 14, 2014 at 12:57 PM

    The Isles can’t win a playoff series to save their lives, but I’m always amazed at how often they win fights. For decades.

  17. blomfeld - Apr 14, 2014 at 12:58 PM

    A matador being gored …

    An invading army being routed by the people …

    A criminal falling victim ‘inadvertently’ to his own evil doings …

    The bottom line is that there’s a time and a place for ‘everything’ in life and violence against ‘those’ who are violent is no exception … in fact, it’s even a ‘good’ thing as Martha Stewart might say ! :)

    GO VIOLENCE AGAINST ‘THOSE’ WHO ARE VIOLENT !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)

    • blackhawksdynasty - Apr 14, 2014 at 1:51 PM

      ‘Martha Stewart’? Really? I can’t help but ‘wonder’ if anybody actually ‘watches’ the dumbass ‘videos’ that you are constantly ‘posting’. I for one simply give ‘you’ my ‘down’ thumb and move on. Your ‘nonsense’ is not at all worth my ‘time’

  18. tved12 - Apr 14, 2014 at 1:41 PM

    I’ve got to say, hockey fights can be boring at times, just guys holding each others jerseys. But this was awesome, just two guys throwing big hay-makers and one of them landing! Way to go Johnson!

  19. djshnooks - Apr 14, 2014 at 2:11 PM

    Why isn’t there video of Sabres rookie Nick Deslauriers COMPLETELY destroying some dude in his first NHL fight?

  20. dolphanindallas - Apr 14, 2014 at 2:17 PM

    Bout time someone knocked that yard sale on his duff

  21. footballchamp - Apr 14, 2014 at 2:58 PM

    Not gonna lie, that was pretty impressive! Johnson is one powerful man. Guy packs a punch.

  22. topshelf37 - Apr 14, 2014 at 3:36 PM

    This Johnson “kid” is no good guy in this scenario. I watched him in a live AHL game where he spent the entire night trying to fight anyone willing. He resorted to spearing, boarding, and slashing to get someone angry enough to go with him. He even went after Paul Byron, who is about 5’6″ 150 lbs on a good day, and outside of this Sedin hit, is more of a finesse guy than anything else. There is no place for either of these guys and it’s clear why they are playing in a meaningless game #82 between 2 of the leagues worst teams. Hope they enjoyed it, likely their last taste of the NHL experience.

    • shaundre93 - Apr 14, 2014 at 4:06 PM

      You just described every enforcer at one time or another who ever played in the AHL. Its what they gotta do to get noticed, and clearly it worked for this kid. Good for him. I’ll save my judgments about whether or not he belongs in the NHL after I’ve seen more than 10 seconds of him playing. It’ll be interesting to see if he sticks at all and whether or not he has anything beyond his fists to offer

      • topshelf37 - Apr 15, 2014 at 9:42 AM

        You won’t see that much of him. You are right though, that is what they have to do to get noticed in the AHL. He can’t skate, I mean REALLY can’t skate. Far worse than Scott or any of the goons, which says a lot. My buddies and I spent a lot of the AHL game laughing at how dumb he looked out there. The league is moving toward fighters who can play, he would have been useful 20 years ago, not anymore. One and done (or actually I think this was 2).

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