As One Doppelgänger Falls, Another Rises

An ongoing inside joke between me and my pals is my constant defense of David Clarkson. I'll even tweet after every goal he scores with an emphatic "DAVID CLARKSON SCORES!", something I haven't had to do in quite some time. The origin of this David Clarkson defense is twofold:

  1. Clarkson grew up in nearby Mimico, rooting for the Leafs, and I would never fault him for getting a monster contract from Dave Nonis
  2. From certain angles, Clarkson looks an awful lot like me, particularly when I was his age and 30lbs heavier

Truth be known, the David Clarkson we see this season is David Clarkson. He's not under performing, he's pretty much playing his best. He was never worthy of the contract he received, and now he's a prime target of disdain.

Peter Horachek made Clarkson a healthy scratch against the Oilers, and we won big. It was only our second win of 2015. Clarkson will likely be a healthy scratch tonight, too.

As one doppelgänger falls, another rises. I received this tweet the other day from @kewl75.

We'll see how this works out...


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Comments (28 - click here to join in!)

Anonymous

Deserves got nothin' to do with it... Have to sit/scratch one of the players.

I agree though that people should give Clarkson a break. Look past the contract and see a 10 minute guy. Unfortunately the Leafs aren't able to play a puck cycle game so the weaker elements of his play get exposed. He'd look fine playing on the 3rd or 4th line in Boston, LA, Nashville. He plays a hard nosed style that people claim to like but because he's getting overpaid he gets ripped.

February 10, 2015 @ 11:39 AM

elvis

The only person who brings up his contract is you. He's not a good player yet you believe he's a consistent 30-goal scorer. Mimico sucks and so does he, contract or not.

February 10, 2015 @ 1:33 PM

elvis

And how do you know he's playing his best? You sound like one of the talking heads on tv.

February 10, 2015 @ 1:41 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@elvis

If he had a reasonable contract for someone of his skillset, he wouldn't have this heat on him. We both know much of the angst comes from the fact he's the 3rd highest paid player on this team with a lengthy contract.

The fact is, he's got 10 goals this season. If you remove the one 30 goal season, his career high is only 17 goals.

February 10, 2015 @ 1:44 PM

elvis

EXACTLY! Yet many (including you!) were elated with the new goal scorer we just signed.

In part, I blame his agent. They're supposed to set you up for reasonable success. There was no way he had the stats to justify anything but a two-way contract.

And to be fair, he did score 30 goals twice in his career. Once was in junior. LEGEND.

February 10, 2015 @ 1:47 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@elvis

Yes, I liked the signing at the time, because he was the best free agent forward available and we landed him.

February 10, 2015 @ 1:48 PM

elvis

That says a lot about who was a free agent.

I scored with the hottest chick at the dance. She also happened to be a werewolf and bit my face off.

February 10, 2015 @ 1:53 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@elvis

When it's not your money, sometimes you want to splurge for the best available.

February 10, 2015 @ 1:55 PM

Argie

I don't think Clarkson was even drafted.

February 10, 2015 @ 1:56 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@Argie

That is correct.

February 10, 2015 @ 1:59 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

But there have been some great NHLers who were never drafted.

Adam Oates
Curtis Joseph
Dan Boyle
Ed Belfour
Martin St. Louis
Steve Thomas
Steve Duchesne
Joe Mullen
etc.

February 10, 2015 @ 2:04 PM

Ben V

@ Elvis: Your comment about the werewolf is quite hilarious. Well played.

February 10, 2015 @ 2:07 PM

Argie

@Mike
How did you come up with that list so fast? Off the top of your head?

February 10, 2015 @ 2:10 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

Argie

I remembered Curtis Joseph was undrafted, then googled it and found a list. I cherry picked a few names from that list.

By the way, do you know who else was undrafted?

Wayne Friggin' Gretzky

February 10, 2015 @ 2:11 PM

mrmojorisinca

DAVID CLARKSON WAS DOOMED TO FAIL..UNLESS HE CAME AND SCORED 30 GOALS PEOPLE WOULD COMPLAIN BECAUSE OF HIS CONTRACT..HE DOESN'T ALWASY SEEM TO BE IN THE GAME, BUT WHEN HE DOES HE HAS HEART..AND THE TEAM NEEDS MORE OF THAT FROM HIM AND THE REST OF THE TEAM NEEDS MORE HEART. LUPAL IS GREAT EXAMPLE EXCEPT HE HURT WAY TO OFTEN.

February 10, 2015 @ 2:22 PM

Ben V

@Mrmojor: Point taken, especially with the caps lock on.

February 10, 2015 @ 2:43 PM

Argie

Borje Salming wasn't drafted either. So yeah, I realize now my point about him never being drafted is not a good one.

February 10, 2015 @ 2:45 PM

mrmojorisinca

Sorry..didn't mean for the yelling..but by the time I noticed didn't want retype :)

February 10, 2015 @ 2:45 PM

elvis

HA! Heart. Right. That's a great thing to go by when building a hockey team.

February 10, 2015 @ 2:48 PM

mrmojorisinca

part of what made Gilmour a great player, Wendell was heart..it goes a long way

February 10, 2015 @ 2:49 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

I see Clarkson as the guy you add to your good team to shore it up for a long playoff run. He shouldn't be the guy, just a nice add-on.

I think if we paid half his salary, a good team out there would be wise to add him to their roster. He's good value for 2.5 mill / year.

February 10, 2015 @ 2:52 PM

elvis

You're not telling the whole story. Gretzky wasn't drafted because he was never eligible by NHL rules. Indianapolis of the WHA signed him as an "under-ager" (the NHL at the time didn't allow players under 20) and when the leagues merged in 1979, the Oilers opted to keep him. So yes, he and Clarkson were never drafted but unlike Clarkson, no one ever had the chance with the Great One.

February 10, 2015 @ 2:58 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@elvis

That's why I left him off my original list. I just threw him in to compare David Clarkson to Wayne Gretzky because I knew it would boil yer potatoes.

February 10, 2015 @ 3:03 PM

Argie

@Mike
You're right, a 2.5 million a yr salary is what he should be making. The problem is he doesn't, which is why we're pissed.

February 10, 2015 @ 3:11 PM

elvis

I wouldn't pay him $250 to play for the Marlies. That's TWO HUNDRED AND FIFTY DOLLARS.

February 10, 2015 @ 3:17 PM

Speysidephil

Elvis you got it right.
This has nothing to do with his contract, he is useless at $250.00, $5 million dollars or whatever $.
The worst Leaf on the ice this season and last season.
Make him go away!

February 10, 2015 @ 5:48 PM

caygeon

Along with Clarkson in the underachieving or not enough talent category are. The envelope please......

J.V.R.- Kessel-- Bozack- Kadri- Komarov-Phaneuf- Robidas- Gardiner- Franson- Lupul-Booth

February 11, 2015 @ 7:35 AM

Just buy-out his contract already!

Hey Mike, what is your opinion about him now? Last nights Clarkson spectacle was too much for me. Can you imagine what his team must think of him after that? Unacceptable!

February 15, 2015 @ 4:50 AM

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