NEW YORK (AP) From Arizona to Newfoundland to Nashville, Tennessee, John Scott will be an NHL All-Star after all.
Scott was voted as the Pacific Division captain for the NHL's new All-Star 3-on-3 tournament, but his status was thrown into limbo when the Arizona Coyotes traded him to the Montreal Canadiens. The Canadiens demoted him to their American Hockey League team in St. John's, Newfoundland, with no plans to bring him back.
Being in the minors would have made Scott ineligible to be an NHL All-Star, but the league announced Tuesday that it decided to let him participate after reviewing the ''unique circumstance'' and considering Scott's desire to play.
''I am looking forward to enjoying a fun and unique experience at All-Star weekend in Nashville with my family,'' said Scott, whose wife is expecting twins. ''While being voted to the All-Star Game by the fans was not something I expected to happen, I am excited to participate in the All-Star events with my fellow players.''
Scott had just one assist in 11 games this season, and the slow-footed 33-year-old's candidacy was part of an online movement centered on the new 3-on-3 format and watching him try to keep up with the best players in the league.
While it was originally a joke at Scott's expense, he embraced the spotlight when fans cast him into it.
''It's one of those things where not everybody gets to go, so I'm not going to be upset about it and pout about it,'' Scott said in December. ''You've got to roll with it and have fun with it.''
Scott's inclusion means the Coyotes will not be represented by a player currently on their roster. The 3-on-3 tournament between the Pacific, Central, Atlantic and Metropolitan Divisions takes place at Nashville's Bridgestone Arena on Jan. 31, with the winning team splitting $1 million in prize money.
''Obviously the fans decided it was important to vote for him and we respect that,'' commissioner Gary Bettman said in San Jose before an event celebrating the Sharks' 25th anniversary. ''Whether or not we need to make adjustments into the future and ensure that truly All-Star players are there is something we'll worry about after we go to Nashville.''