NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 04: John Scott #28 of the New York Rangers skates during the game against the Boston Bruins at Madison Square Garden on March 4, 2012 in New York City. (Photo by Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images)
Four of the above players do not fit. If you guessed "Brandon Prust, John Mitchell, Brandon Dubinsky, and Anton Stralman" you are correct. The category is "players on the roster bubble."
I'm not one to complain often when the team I root for is in first place, and by a wide margin, too, but the way the New York Rangers have handled recent roster decisions has upset me to the point I need to write about it.
Between Brandon Prust, Mike Rupp, Stu Bickel, and John Scott, the Rangers have four players that can drop the gloves at any time. Of the four, Prust has an actual role outside of fighting, Rupp has a perceived role outside of fighting (in John Tortorella's eyes) Bickel can do something right, it appears (in John Tortorella's eyes) and John Scott is a 6'8 270 pound skating waste of a 5th round draft pick.
I'm not going to whine about the loss of a 5th round draft pick, although the trade was a head-scratcher, but I will complain about John Scott playing over players like Anton Stralman and John Mitchell.
Mitchell was listed as a healthy scratch, he has dealt with hand issues, so I'm okay with him being benched. I wouldn't bench him vs. the New Jersey Devils personally, but I understand the move.
Anton Stralman was benched as a punishment for his terrible play the previous game. I get that, too. What I don't get is how John Scott could play in the game vs. the Devils, and Brandon Dubinsky still gets into a fight. Dubinsky hurt his hand in the fight, but appears to be okay. That doesn't change the fact that Scott is a mess of a hockey player that's sole role with the team is to help avoid situations like the one Dubinsky was in vs. the Devils.
Follow me after the jump for more ranting.The Rangers are a very skilled team with a large lead, so they can afford to make some dumb decisions, but John Scott simply should not play.
Scott is too big to fight most enforcers, as they will just turn him down and pester players like Prust, Rupp, and Dubinsky for fights.
What's the point of playing Scott, then? Intimidation? Isn't that why the Rangers signed Rupp?
Between Mike Rupp, Brandon Prust, and others, the Rangers are fine. The fact that Stu Bickel and John Scott got playing time over Anton Stralman angers me, and the fact that the Rangers still saw Brandon Dubinsky fight in a game that those two were in is a huge problem that needs to be addressed.
My overall anger is directed towards the management of the roster. I will never understand the reasoning behind adding more and more enforcers to the lineup, and not promoting Tim Erixon, or JAM, or Mats Zuccarello, players that can actually play the game of hockey with actual talent.
Anyway, that's enough ranting for now. Discuss.