David Clarkson’s 2013-14 season did not start well.
The Toronto Maple Leafs forward was suspended 10 games for leaving the team’s bench to join an altercation during a preseason game against the Buffalo Sabres.
It was the beginning of year to forget.
Due to injuries and suspensions the Ontario native dressed in just 60 games scoring a career-low five goals and 11 points after signing a mammoth seven-year $37 million contract last summer.
It’s a deal some call the worst in franchise history.
“He’s got 10 games on the bench, which I think was a big part of how he played,” general manager Dave Nonis told The National Post earlier this week. “A lot of things went wrong for him. Very few went right. It spiraled out of control. But David Clarkson didn’t turn into a bad hockey player over night. He had two very strong years prior to coming here. It looks like he’s worked tremendously hard to come back and have a good year this year and he’ll be given every opportunity to do that.”
The Clarkson news didn’t get better Saturday as word out of Leafs’ camp is the 30-year-old along with center Tyler Bozak are likely to miss a couple of days due to lower body injuries.