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Scott Gomez
Scott gomez.png
Born December 23, 1979 (1979-12-23) (age 39)
Anchorage, Alaska
Height 5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Weight 200 lb (91 kg; 14 st 4 lb)
Position Center
Shoots Left
NHL team
Former teams
Ottawa Senators
New Jersey Devils
New York Rangers
Montreal Canadiens
San Jose Sharks
Florida Panthers
St. Louis Blues
National team Flag of the United States.svg United States
NHL Draft 27th overall, 1998
New Jersey Devils
Playing career 1999–present

Scott Gomez (born Scott Carlos Gomez on December 23, 1979) is an American professional ice hockey player who is currently playing for the Ottawa Senators of the National Hockey League (NHL).

He has previously played in the NHL with the New Jersey Devils, New York Rangers, Montreal Canadiens, San Jose Sharks, Florida Panthers and the St. Louis Blues.

Playing CareerEdit

New Jersey DevilsEdit

In the 1998 NHL Entry Draft, Scott was selected with the 27th pick of the first round by the New Jersey Devils.

At the time, he was playing for the Tri-City Americans of the Western Hockey League (WHL) and had just been named to the WHL's All-Rookie Team. He also played for the Alaska Aces In the season after he was drafted, he justified the Devils' decision by scoring 108 points in 58 games for the Americans. This earned him a spot on the WHL West First All-Star Team.

The year before, Scott led the South Surrey Eagles of the Tier II Junior "A" British Columbia Hockey League to the Gold medal game of the 1997 Royal Bank Cup against the hometown Summerside Western Capitals, but Gomez and his South Surrey Eagles were defeated 4–3.

After this impressive WHL performance, Scott was brought to New Jersey for the 1999–2000 NHL season, making him the fifth Alaskan to play in the NHL. In his rookie NHL season, he had 51 assists and 70 points for the Devils.

For his efforts, he was awarded the Calder Memorial Trophy as the league's top rookie and played in the NHL All-Star Game in Toronto.

Scott scored 10 points in the 2000 playoffs as the Devils won their second Stanley Cup.

In his sophomore season, he totaled 63 points. The Devils again made their way to the Stanley Cup Finals, but they were defeated by the Colorado Avalanche in seven games.

In the 2001–02 season, Scott's numbers dropped, as he scored just 10 goals and 48 points. The Devils bowed out of the playoffs in the first round that season, losing to the Carolina Hurricanes. 

Scott did not play a game in that series due to injury. The 2002–03 season, however, was an improvement for him and the Devils. He tallied 55 points and again helped the Devils win the Stanley Cup, this time scoring 12 points during the playoffs. 

The 2003–04 season was an even better year for Scott, as he scored 70 points, the most since his rookie year. He also tied for the NHL lead in assists, with 56. However, the Devils lost in the playoffs to the Philadelphia Flyers.

During the NHL lockout that forced the cancellation of the 2004–05 season, Scott returned to his native hometown of Anchorage, Alaska, and played for the Alaska Aces of the ECHL.

Throughout the season, he was the face of the Alaska franchise, as well as the ECHL and he led the ECHL in scoring and won league Most Valuable Player honors.

Scott's season ended early when he was seriously injured by Bakersfield Condors enforcer Ashlee Langdone, who checked him into an open bench door during Game 4 of the Pacific Division Semifinals. He sustained a broken pelvis from the incident.

Despite the lockout, Scott returned to form in 2005–06 and set career highs in goals scored and points, tallying a total of 84 points.

Along with linemates Brian Gionta, Patrik Elias and, before Elias's comeback, Zach Parise, Scott helped rally the Devils from a poor beginning of the season by finishing the season on an 11-game winning streak and clinching the division title in the last game.

He finished the 2006 Stanley Cup playoffs with five goals and four assists in nine games.

On July 25, 2006, Devils General Manager Lou Lamoriello accepted an arbitrator's ruling of a $5 million, one-year contract for Scott for the 2006–07 season. Hence, he would go on to be an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2007.

During the 2006–07 season, Scott led the Devils to the second round of the playoffs and totalled 60 points.

New York RangersEdit

On July 1, 2007, Scott signed a $51.5 million, seven-year contract with the New York Rangers.

On that same day, the Rangers signed Chris Drury, who also wears the number 23.

To settle who would wear number 23 while playing for the Rangers, a puck was flipped, with Drury winning and earning the right to continue wearing number 23 while Scott changed his number to 19. Coincidentally, Drury won the Calder Memorial Trophy the year before Gomez won the same award.

When asked about his decision to leave the Devils, Scott said:

I think it's more that New Jersey and I didn't really talk much… …Both sides were ready to move on. They're a tremendous organization. So many memories, what can I say? Everything I have and everything I've done is because of them. But I think at the end of the day, it was time.”

On February 1, 2008, in a game against his former club, the Devils, Scott recorded his 500th career point by assisting on a Chris Drury goal.

On October 1, 2008, he and the New York Rangers won the Victoria Cup by beating Metallurg Magnitogorsk by the score of 4–3.

On October 3, 2008, Scott was named an alternate captain of the New York Rangers.

Montreal CanadiensEdit

On June 30, 2009, Scott was traded by the Rangers (along with Tom Pyatt and Michael Busto) to the Montreal Canadiens in exchange for Chris Higgins, Doug Janik, Ryan McDonagh and Pavel Valentenko.

The trade reunited Scott with former Devils teammate Brian Gionta, who signed with the Canadiens after the Gomez trade.

Montreal's acquisition of him drew considerable attention and criticism across various news sources largely because of his lack of production since signing his contract, one of the longest and highest in the NHL.

With the Canadiens, Scott wore the number 91 for the 2009–10 season (a reverse of number 19) as his former two numbers are retired by the Canadiens organization (number 19 of Larry Robinson and the number 23 of Bob Gainey).

For the start of the 2010–11 season, Scott decided to switch his number from 91 to 11 (previously worn by long-time Canadiens captain Saku Koivu). He decided to wear number 11 because he wore it during his childhood.

During the 2010–11 season, on February 5, 2011, he scored a goal which would be his last for more than a year. During this time, the Canadiens played in 90 games, although Gomez missed 30 of these games in the 2011–12 season.

Of the games that he played in, Scott failed to score in the final 29 games of the 2010–11 season, the preceding seven-game playoff series against the Boston Bruins and the first 24 games he played in during the 2011–12 season: a total scoreless drought of 60 games.

Scott had 22 assists and had a plus-minus rating of −15 while registering 122 shots on goal during this period.

The drought ended on February 9, 2012 with a one-timer goal during a 4–2 victory over the New York Islanders.

2012-13 LockoutEdit

Due to the 2012–13 lockout, Scott followed his previous steps and opted a return to the Alaska Aces of the ECHL. Initially on a training basis only with the Aces, he signed to play in 2012–13 season, posting 13 points in 11 games.

When the lockout was settled, the new collective bargaining agreement (CBA) directly affected Scott in two ways: first, it forced teams to count any American Hockey League (AHL) player's salary above $900,000 against its NHL cap, meaning that the Canadiens could not "bury" Scott's salary by sending him to their AHL affiliate, as had been previously done with players such as (Wade Redden) to clear cap room.

Second, it allowed for up to two contracts per team to be bought out for up to two-thirds of the remaining salary, without the buyout counting against the cap in the 2013 and/or 2014 off-seasons, so as to help teams get under the reduced cap.

However, the buyouts could not be used on injured players, so, to avoid any risk of a hockey-related injury, on January 13, 2013, the first day of the Canadiens training camp, Scott was directed by General Manager Marc Bergevin to stay home for the shortened season to ensure a buy-out at the end of the season.

While this meant that Scott (along with Wade Redden who, due to the provision regarding AHL salaries, was in a similar situation) would still have been paid his pro-rated 2012–13 salary despite not playing, the NHL Players' Association (NHLPA) was concerned that he and Redden being forced to spend an entire year away from hockey would adversely affect their ability to find employment elsewhere in the NHL during the 2013 off-season, even at a much reduced salary.

On January 15, 2013, in order to avoid this process, the CBA was revised to allow teams to use one of their two compliance buyouts prior to the start of the shortened 2013 season with the provision that the players bought out in such a way would still be paid their pro-rated but otherwise full 2012–13 salaries (which would still count against the 2012–13 cap), and with the buyout of the subsequent years otherwise proceeding as originally intended.

With the revised agreement in place, Scott was promptly placed on unconditional waivers and bought-out, becoming a free agent on January 17, 2013.

San Jose SharksEdit

On January 23, 2013, Scott signed a one-year, $700,000 contract with the San Jose Sharks.

Playing in 39 games for the Sharks, he recorded two goals and 13 assists.

Florida PanthersEdit

On July 31, 2013, Scott signed a one-year contract with the Florida Panthers.

Playing in 46 games for the Panthers, he scored just two goals to go with 10 assists.

Returning to New JerseyEdit

Scott returned to familiar grounds in attending the New Jersey Devils' training camp for the 2014–15 season on an unsigned try-out basis. On December 1, 2014, the Devils signed him to a one-year contract.

On December 28, 2014, Scott participated in his 1,000th NHL game.

He rediscovered his scoring touch with the Devils, amassing his best offensive output since 2011, finishing third amongst the Devils with 34 points in 58 games.

St. Louis BluesEdit

With the Devils signalling an end of an era through managerial changes and with the intent to build a younger roster, Scott was not tendered a new contract by the Devils.

As a free agent, Scott again accepted a try-out basis contract to attend the St. Louis Blues training camp for the 2015–16 season on August 27, 2015.

On October 7, 2015, Scott signed a one-year two-way contract with the Blues worth $575,000 to begin the 2015–16 season. He was used primarily on the powerplay with the Blues and contributed with 8 points in 21 games.

With the club returning to health and in need of roster positions, Scott was placed on waivers by the team on December 29, 2015.

Upon clearing, he requested a release from his contract with the Blues and was placed on unconditional waivers by the Blues in order to return to free agency.

Hershey BearsEdit

Scott continued his season in the new-year by signing with the Hershey Bears of the AHL (an affiliate to the Washington Capitals) on a professional try-out contract on January 14, 2016.

On March 1, 2016, he exercised the release from his tryout contract.

Ottawa SenatorsEdit

On March 2, 2016, Scott was signed by the Ottawa Senators as an unrestricted free agent for $575,000 after the Senators first line center Kyle Turris was placed on injured reserve.

Career StatisticsEdit

Regular season and playoffsEdit

Regular season Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
1996–97South Surrey EaglesBCHL56487612494
1997–98Tri-City AmericansWHL4512374957
1998–99Tri-City AmericansWHL58307810855106131931
1999–00New Jersey DevilsNHL82195170782346104
2000–01New Jersey DevilsNHL761449634625591424
2001–02New Jersey DevilsNHL7610384836
2002–03New Jersey DevilsNHL80134255482439122
2003–04New Jersey DevilsNHL801456707050660
2004–05Alaska AcesECHL611373866941344
2005–06New Jersey DevilsNHL823351844295496
2006–07New Jersey DevilsNHL7213476042114101414
2007–08New York RangersNHL81165470361047118
2008–09New York RangersNHL771642586072354
2009–10Montreal CanadiensNHL7812475960192121425
2010–11Montreal CanadiensNHL80731384870442
2011–12Montreal CanadiensNHL38291114
2012–13Alaska AcesECHL11671312
2012–13San Jose SharksNHL39213152290226
2013–14Florida PanthersNHL462101224
2014–15New Jersey DevilsNHL587273423
2015–16St. Louis BluesNHL211784
2015–16Hershey BearsAHL18420240
2015–16Ottawa SenatorsNHL130112
NHL totals 1079 181 575 756 655 149 29 72 101 95

InternationalEdit

Year Team Event Result GP G A Pts PIM
1998 United States WJC 5th 7 1 0 1 2
1999 United States WJC 8th 6 3 7 10 4
2004 United States WCH SF 7 2 1 3 2
2006 United States OG 8th 6 1 4 5 10
Junior totals 13 4 7 11 6
Senior totals 11 2 7 9 10

AccoladesEdit

  • 1996–97: Abbott Cup – Surrey Eagles (BCHL)
  • 1996–97: Doyle Cup – Surrey Eagles (BCHL)
  • 1996–97: Mowat Cup – Surrey Eagles (BCHL)
  • 1996–97: Fred Page Cup – Surrey Eagles (BCHL)
  • 1996–97: Bruce Allison Memorial Trophy – Surrey Eagles (BCHL)
  • 1996–97: Top Forward (Tier II Junior "A" Royal Bank Cup)
  • 1997–98: All-Rookie Team (WHL)
  • 1998–99: West First All-Star Team (WHL)
  • 1999–2000: Played in All-Star Game (NHL)
  • 1999–2000: All-Rookie Team (NHL)
  • 1999–2000: Calder Memorial Trophy (NHL)
  • 2000: Stanley Cup — New Jersey Devils (NHL)
  • 2003: Stanley Cup — New Jersey Devils (NHL)
  • 2003–04: Led league in assists — 56 (tied with Martin St. Louis) (NHL)
  • 2004–05: First All-Star Team (ECHL)
  • 2004–05: Most Valuable Player (ECHL)
  • 2007–08: Played in All-Star Game (NHL)
  • 2008: Victoria Cup – New York Rangers