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Leafs irate over ‘Princess Phaneuf’ comment, Scott expresses regret


Following Saturday night’s 4-2 loss to Toronto, Buffalo enforcer John Scott took aim at Leafs captain Dion Phaneuf by calling him “Princess Phaneuf” in response to this third-period scrum:

“All of a sudden I’m not allowed to hit him anymore. He’s Princess Phaneuf. It’s a joke,” Scott after the game.“My leg’s fine, everything’s good. It’s just something where I guess you’re not allowed to hit the star guys anymore.”

On Monday, the Leafs took issue with Scott’s remarks.

As for the actual combatants, both seemed keen to put the incident behind them.

“That was a slip of the tongue,” Scott told the Buffalo News. “I was just obviously a little emotional at the time — kinda regret saying it.”

“It’s a non-issue. I just once again was kinda shooting my mouth off. A little too fired up after the game and said something, didn’t realize it would get the kind of traction it’s gotten.”

Phaneuf also tried to brush it off.

“To be honest with you, that game’s in the past now,” he said. “I don’t take it personally.”

Stars to scratch Nichushkin after rough outing versus Avs?

Craig Anderson
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Looks as though slumping Dallas winger Valeri Nichushkin could be a healthy scratch tonight when the Stars host the Oilers at American Airlines.

Per the Morning-News, Nichushkin — who barely played in the second and third periods of Saturday’s 6-3 loss to Colorado — is likely to be replaced by Colton Sceviour in the lineup.

Stars head coach Lindy Ruff was fuming after the Avs defeat, calling it “embarrassing, worse than disappointing.” It didn’t take a genius to realize one of the players in his doghouse was Nichushkin, who had just 2:02 of ice time in the second period and 3:24 in the third.

Yesterday, Ruff dropped Nichushkin to the fourth line in practice.

“I’ve been trying to help him by shifting him around,” the head coach explained. “He had some struggles early in camp on right wing, so I put him on left, and he doesn’t seem real comfortable at left right now.

“His game, everything has got to get a little bit quicker.”

The 10th overall pick in 2013, Nichushkin has struggled to build on the form shown in his rookie campaign, when he scored 14 goals and 34 points in 79 contests.

He missed nearly all of last season with a linger hip ailment and has been a virtual non-factor through the first two games this year.

Report: Teams ‘screaming bloody murder’ about Richards settlement

Mike Richards

When the Los Angeles Kings announced they’d settled with Mike Richards, it didn’t take long for the accusations of salary-cap circumvention to materialize.

And though NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly was adamant that the settlement was “far from” circumvention, apparently not everyone agrees with the league in that regard.

“Privately, other teams are screaming bloody murder and are threatening to make an issue about it at December’s Board of Governors’ meeting,” Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reports.

Friedman goes into more detail in his story, so click the link to read more.

But remember how we wrote that the issue in this case was precedent, and that the “NHL and NHLPA can’t allow teams to escape onerous contracts through a back door”?

Well, one agent posed a good question to Friedman: “What’s to stop other teams from trying this?”