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NHL hands Leafs’ Clarkson 10-game suspension


The Toronto Maple Leafs admitted that David Clarkson made a mistake by leaving the team’s bench to fight in Sunday’s melee with the Buffalo Sabres; now the NHL is making him pay. As expected, he was handed that automatic 10-game suspension on Monday.

Clarkson, 29, won’t be able to participate in his first Leafs regular season game until a road contest against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Oct. 25.

With little surprise, this suspension will take a hearty chunk out of the newly-signed forward’s wallet. He’s forfeiting $269,230.80 to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.

This development hurts the Leafs in more ways than just losing Clarkson, as this provides no salary cap relief for a team with little breathing room.

Now we’ll just need to wait and see how the NHL handles Phil Kessel’s slash-and-spear outburst on Buffalo Sabres tough guy John Scott.

Here’s video of the line brawl that inspired Clarkson to make that significant mistake:

Follow James O’Brien @cyclelikesedins