David Clarkson;  Patrick Wiercioch

Clarkson set to make Leafs debut following suspension


Toronto Maple Leafs fans will finally get their first look at David Clarkson in a regular season game.

Clarkson’s 10-game suspension for leaving the bench to fight Buffalo’s John Scott in a preseason game is through and tonight he’ll be suiting up on the road against the Columbus Blue Jackets. As the Canadian Press’ Stephen Whyno shares, he’s ready to get it started.

“It’s like Christmas: You used to open up the box there’d be a chocolate and then another chocolate,” Clarkson said jokingly. “I got a box at home, I get my daughter to open it. No, but I’ve been definitely checking off the dates and getting ready to go.”

Clarkson practiced on a line with Dave Bolland and Mason Raymond on Thursday and that line was already one of Toronto’s more productive ones this season.

Of course, Joffrey Lupul departed practice after being struck on the foot by a Paul Ranger shot so they may not be at as loaded up front as they hoped. Nikolai Kulemin is still out with an ankle injury.

Dropping like flies: Johnson, Killorn hurt in Bolts’ exhibition

Montreal Canadiens v Tampa Bay Lightning - Game One
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You probably know the drill: injury updates are murky in the NHL basically from the moment a puck drops.

We’ll learn more once the 2015-16 season begins, but at the moment, Saturday might have served as a costly night for the Tampa Bay Lightning. Both Tyler Johnson and Alex Killorn went down with injuries stemming from a 3-2 pre-season win against the Florida Panthers.

“Guys were dropping like flies,” Steven Stamkos told the Tamba Bay Times.

These could be minor situations – just about any ailment will sideline a key asset this time of year – yet one cannot help but wonder if the Lightning might limp into this campaign.

Nikita Kucherov is dealing with his own issues, so that means at least minor issues for one half of the Bolts’ top six forwards.

It’s believed that more will be known about these banged-up Bolts sometime on Sunday.

Raffi Torres gets match penalty for being Raffi Torres

Raffi Torres

With knee issues still limiting him, Raffi Torres isn’t as mobile as he once was. Apparently he still moves well enough to leave the usual path of destruction.

It’s the pre-season, so it’s unclear if we’ll get a good look at the check, but Torres received a match penalty for his hit on Anaheim Ducks forward Jakob Silfverberg.

Most accounts were pretty critical of the San Jose Sharks’ chief troublemaker:

It’s too early to tell if Silfverberg is injured. If he is, that’s a significant loss for the Ducks, as he really showed signs of fulfilling his promise (especially during the 2015 playoffs).

As far as Torres goes, he’s hoping to play in the Sharks’ season-opener. Wherever he ends up, he’ll certainly make plenty of enemies on the ice.

Whether it was because of that hit or just the general distaste shared by those sides, it sounds like tonight’s Sharks – Ducks exhibition is getting ugly, in general:

This post will be updated if video of the hit becomes available, and also if we get a better idea of Silfverberg’s condition.

Update: Bullet dodged?