BUFFALO, N.Y. - Buffalo Sabres enforcer John Scott was suspended indefinitely by the NHL on Thursday pending a disciplinary hearing for a blindside hit to the head that levelled Boston Bruins forward Lou Eriksson.
Scott has been given the opportunity to attend an in-person hearing, which has not yet been scheduled. The hearing is offered when a suspension has the potential to exceed five games.
Scott was issued a match penalty for charging and ejected for his hit on Eriksson early in the third period of Boston's 5-2 win Wednesday. Eriksson was skating through the neutral zone and had just dumped the puck into the Sabres zone when Scott skated in from the player's right and struck him with a shoulder to the face.
Eriksson was dazed and didn't return. He stayed in Buffalo overnight as a precaution.
The Bruins, who host San Jose on Thursday night, have not provided an update on Eriksson's status or whether he has returned to Boston.
Scott was apologetic after practice Thursday. He called it "a bad play" and added he didn't mean to aim for Eriksson's head.
"I kind of feel really upset," he said, noting that he texted an apology to Eriksson. "I was sick to my stomach last night knowing what happened. And watching the video, I kind of regret the whole situation."
Scott's suspension further depletes the Sabres' roster. Buffalo is now down two roster spots because forward Patrick Kaleta is serving a 10-game suspension for an illegal check to the head of Columbus Blue Jackets defenceman Jack Johnson.
Kaleta has missed six games and is waiting for the NHL to rule on his appeal.
The Sabres (1-9-1), off to their worst start in franchise history, made two roster moves Thursday in preparing for a two-game road swing that opens at Florida on Friday.
Fourth-line forward Cody McCormick was activated after missing two games with a leg injury.
The Sabres waived forward Kevin Porter for assignment to the minors, according to a person familiar with the move. The person informed The Associated Press of the decision on the condition of anonymity because coach Ron Rolston declined to say how the team was going to free up a roster spot to add McCormick.