Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports
David Clarkson, Center/Right Wing
2013 Club : New Jersey Devils
2013 Salary : USD 2,666,667
Weight : 200 lbs
Stats: 48 GP, 15-9-24, -6, 35:11 PROD, 17:36 TOI
Admittedly, I have never been a fan of Clarkson. But that could most certainly have to do with the sweater he wore rather than his talents.
A physical grinding winger might be the perfect compliment on the Isles first line and what Clarkson could also provide that the Isles Hart Trophy nominee has never had in his career would be a protective wingman, ala Clark Gillies from back in New York’s heyday.
Clarkson has spent his entire 7 year career in New Jersey and there is no question that general manager Lou Lamoriello would like to lock the tough guy up to an extension. But, that could be easier said than done. Apparently bleeding cash from a front office perspective and with the Ilya Kovalchuk contract looming large, David could bolt for greener pastures elsewhere.
For a modest salary this season, he was again on a 30 goal pace (or very close to it) and not to belabor the point, but when you throw in his physical play and willingness to scrap, could prove to be a valuable addition. It would have marked the second straight such goal total for Clarkson, who set his career high just the year before.
Clarkson has played 91% of his games over six full seasons, with one (2009-2010) accounting for a large part of the 9% as he missed 36 games that season. So durability is not really a question with him and Ryder, comparative to Horton. It is also no coincidence that the goal scoring rise for David has been tied to increased responsibility and ice time. He was in the 12-14 minute mark the first four seasons before jumping to 16:22 and 17:36 the most recent two. So the offensive output is more than likely not a complete fluke.
Projected armchair GM offer : 5 years, 20mm