TORONTO (AP) — Buffalo Sabres tough guy John Scott was looking for a fight. The Toronto Maple Leafs weren't happy when he picked Phil Kessel as his opponent.
Kessel, who had scored twice in the Leafs' 5-3 preseason win Sunday night, is 6-feet-0 and Scott is 6-8.
The two aren't even close to being in the same weight class and Kessel wasn't inclined to get involved. Kessel backtracked and swung his stick a few times at Scott as several teammates rushed in.
"It was pretty stupid, right? He said he was going to jump me," Kessel said.
"What are you going to do? He's a big boy so if he's coming after me, what are you going to do?"
The incident came with 10 minutes left in the game and set off a line brawl and a goalie fight between the Leafs' Jonathan Bernier and the Sabres' Ryan Miller.
It came right after a fight between Toronto's Jamie Devane and Buffalo's Corey Tropp .
"That guy's a big guy, 6-foot-5," Sabres coach Ron Rolston said. "And (Tropp's) a smaller guy, but certainly a battler. So guys weren't happy about it."
Tropp was left bloodied on the ice after the fight and had to leave the game.
"(Tropp) was the guy who instigated the fight," Leafs coach Randy Carlyle said when asked about the incident that allegedly spurred Scott to go after Kessel.
"Obviously, maybe they felt that was the problem was that there was a bigger man fighting a smaller guy."
Kessel was issued a match penalty for swinging his stick, which means an automatic suspension pending a ruling from NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman.
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