Friday, August 22, 2008

Prospect Watch 2008: John "Condominium" Scott

NHL.com sez:

John Scott -- With massive size (6-foot-7 [he's actually 6'8" and change], 255 pounds) and a mean streak to boot, Scott racked up 184 minutes in penalties in 64 games with Houston, his second season at the pro level. The 25-year-old spent four years at Michigan Tech and eclipsed 100 penalty minutes in two of those seasons despite the shorter schedule.

Clearly, his skating will play a factor as to whether Scott can play in the NHL.

"He's come a long way," Thompson said of Scott, who signed with the Wild after going undrafted. "We liked him at Michigan Tech. He's shown some flashes. He's an older guy, but he's huge. He's strong and powerful. Are his feet good enough for the NHL? I guess we'll have to find that out. It's harder for the tough guys to make it on defense. In your own end down low, you can't use your stick and you can't use your free hand."
Ms. Conduct sez:
Scotty Scotty Scotty. This is the player whose inclusion I have a real problem with, particularly to the exclusion of some other players (more on that in the defensive wrap-up).

I'll admit, I watched him the last two seasons with rose-colored glasses on. I loved the way he played and fought with such glee his first season. He defended his teammates but didn't quite fit the "tough guy" mold. He's just enormous and has a huge reach so he's the safest one to use when you need to send a message. All he has to do is grab the jersey and start pounding. The other guy is just flailing around because he can't even reach Scotty's jersey. Very effective and he hasn't fought too many guys twice.

But the reality is, he's just too nice to be the full-on bad ass you want him to be. You get the distinct sense that unless a guy has done something pretty egregious to him or his teammates, he really doesn't want to hurt anyone, nor does he want to get (yet another) penalty. And get penalties he does. There have been games where, no sooner does he come out of the box for boarding or tripping or making a guy shit his breezers in fear, that the ref slaps him with another 2 for something else. It's PAINFUL to watch, especially if you have a particular fondness for the player. Because you know he's just gotta be frustrated as all hell, and as a fan, it's just frustrating for the team's performance.

So, I really don't see Scotty in the NHL. Yeah, he's huge and tough and has amazing reach, all of which are useful, but he's just gonna get his ass handed to him by the speedy forwards in the league. And if he's not into the enforcer role all that much, what else is there? He did play forward a few times this past season and seemed to have fun letting loose a little bit, but I'm not sure converting him to forward is the answer and I don't think he'd want that anyway. But who really knows. I know the guys in Minnesota love the big galoots so we'll see what kinda look he gets at training camp. But I don't see Lemaire trusting him over others.

Finally, here's my favorite Scotty story: Last season when Reitz was injured and sitting in the broadcast booth with Shaver during a game, somebody on the other team was hassling one of the Aeros forwards (can't remember who). The game was close but Scotty decided to defend his teammate anyway and take the instigator. Reitz questioned the decision but said, basically, that's just Johnny and his "big teddy bear heart."

2 comments:

hipcheck  August 22, 2008 at 2:50 PM  

I haven't read this one yet, but I just love the picture! hehe

Ms. Conduct  August 22, 2008 at 4:13 PM  

:) I've been eyeing that one for him since I started this...

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