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John Scott won’t be bullied into not being an NHL All-Star

Arizona Coyotes' John Scott, left, punches Columbus

Arizona Coyotes' John Scott, left, punches Columbus Blue Jackets' Jared Boll during a fight in the second period of an NHL game Thursday, Dec. 17, 2015, in Glendale, Ariz. Photo Credit: AP / Ross D. Franklin

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The strange saga of enforcer John Scott took another turn yesterday when, on the eve of NHL All-Star media day, The Players’ Tribune posted an essay by Scott in which he accuses the league of trying to bully him into not participating.

Near the end of a discussion about his All-Star credentials, or lack thereof, Scott writes, “But I’m one of them. And that means a lot to me. It means a lot to my family.

“So when someone from the NHL calls me and says, ‘Do you think this is something your kids would be proud of?’ . . . That’s when they lost me. That was it, right there. That was the moment.

“Because while I may not deserve to be an NHL All-Star, I know I deserve to be the judge of what my kids will — and won’t — be proud of me for.”

An NHL spokesman declined to comment on Scott’s assertion, which did not mention the name of the league official he says called him.

Scott also details in the piece the circumstances under which he was traded from the Coyotes to the Canadiens and then promptly sent to a minor-league team based in Newfoundland.

Scott, a forward known more for his fighting than for his hockey skills, initially was voted in by fans as an Internet-based joke.

At first, he tried to dissuade fans from continuing to support him, but he eventually embraced the idea.

Then he was traded out of the Western Conference and with it, presumably, his spot on the All-Star roster. But the NHL later announced he would be allowed to participate after all.

Ovechkin, Toews are out. The Capitals’ Alex Ovechkin and the Blackhawks’ Jon athan Toews pulled out of All-Star Weekend with injuries. By rule, both will be suspended for the first game after the All-Star break, the same punishment the Penguins accepted last season with Sidney Crosby. The Islanders’ John Tavares will replace Ovechkin as captain of the Metro Division for the league’s new three-on-three tournament format. — AP

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