Clarkson to have hearing for Sobotka headshot


Another David Clarkson suspension?

The possibility is on the horizon as Sportsnet’s Nick Kypreos reports Clarkson will have a hearing with the NHL’s Department of Player Safety for his headshot on St. Louis’ Vladimir Sobotka from Thursday night.

UPDATE: The NHL has confirmed the hearing.

Click here for a link to the incident in question (FF to 1:18):

Clarkson was given a two-minute minor for an illegal check to the head, roughly 10 minutes later, got into a fight with Blues defenseman Roman Polak.

(Clarkson wasn’t done there, either — he picked up a slashing penalty against Polak with 11 minutes to go in the third.)

Toronto’s high-profile free agent signing missed the start of the season due to a 10-game suspension levied during the preseason, when he left the bench to engage in a fight against Buffalo.

Since then, Clarkson has only managed to score two goals and six points in 23 games.

Kypreos reports the Clarkson hearing is set for Saturday morning at 9 a.m. ET.

Sabres waive d-man Donovan

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Buffalo has put blueliner Matt Donovan on waivers, per Sportsnet.

Donovan, 25, signed a one-year deal with the Sabres on the opening day of free agency after spending his entire professional career with the Isles organization.

The fact he’s being waived isn’t a huge shock. Donovan failed to draw into a single Sabres game this year despite a whittled-down blueline; Jake McCabe, recently called up from AHL Rochester, drew into the lineup for Monday’s win over Columbus at the expense of Carlo Colaiacovo, who played the first two games of the year.

The fact both McCabe and Colaiacovo were ahead on the depth chart didn’t bode well for Donovan. Today’s move could also suggest that Zach Bogosian, who hasn’t played this year due to injury, is ready to return.

Stars to scratch Nichushkin after rough outing versus Avs?

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Looks as though slumping Dallas winger Valeri Nichushkin could be a healthy scratch tonight when the Stars host the Oilers at American Airlines.

Per the Morning-News, Nichushkin — who barely played in the second and third periods of Saturday’s 6-3 loss to Colorado — is likely to be replaced by Colton Sceviour in the lineup.

Stars head coach Lindy Ruff was fuming after the Avs defeat, calling it “embarrassing, worse than disappointing.” It didn’t take a genius to realize one of the players in his doghouse was Nichushkin, who had just 2:02 of ice time in the second period and 3:24 in the third.

Yesterday, Ruff dropped Nichushkin to the fourth line in practice.

“I’ve been trying to help him by shifting him around,” the head coach explained. “He had some struggles early in camp on right wing, so I put him on left, and he doesn’t seem real comfortable at left right now.

“His game, everything has got to get a little bit quicker.”

The 10th overall pick in 2013, Nichushkin has struggled to build on the form shown in his rookie campaign, when he scored 14 goals and 34 points in 79 contests.

He missed nearly all of last season with a linger hip ailment and has been a virtual non-factor through the first two games this year.