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Clarkson has ‘no idea’ if he’ll re-sign with the Devils

Apr 25, 2013, 2:26 PM EDT

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David Clarkson wants to stay with the New Jersey Devils.

He just doesn’t know if it will happen.

Clarkson, 29, is a pending unrestricted free agent with 14 goals and nine assists in 46 games. Last season, he scored a career-high 30 times in the regular season.

“I don’t know where I’ll be [next season]. I have no idea what will end up happening,” Clarkson told The Star-Ledger today. “There haven’t been any negotiations between Mr. (Lou) Lamoriello and my agent. I’ve had no decisions to make yet.”

If Clarkson tests the open market, he’ll be one of the top forwards available under the age of 30.

The fact he’s never signed a particularly big NHL contract may also make him drive a hard bargain. Who knows if the opportunity will present itself again?

It doesn’t sound like he’ll be persuaded to leave New Jersey easily though:

“What better situation could there be? I have a coach (Pete DeBoer) I’ve had since I was young who I believe, besides my father, has been the biggest part of my hockey career. And Mr. Lamoriello was the first GM to give me an opportunity.”

Related: Elias wants to remain a Devil, ‘but I understand the business side’

  1. jcmeyer10 - Apr 25, 2013 at 2:33 PM

    He has to run all his decisions by his beard so that might complicate things.

    • jcmeyer10 - Apr 25, 2013 at 3:01 PM

      I meant it as a compliment, that beard is majestic.

  2. pepper2011 - Apr 25, 2013 at 3:02 PM

    Trade Lucic for picks/prospects and use the cap space to sign this guy.

  3. biffnasty - Apr 25, 2013 at 3:02 PM

    guy was well over hyped..had 1 good year, shoulda tried gettin an extension last year when he knew how to score goals

    • pepper2011 - Apr 25, 2013 at 3:15 PM

      At this time I would like to point out he is not a “playmaker” and is on a team with absolute garbage for centers. He is tied for the team lead in goals and leads the team in PIMs – in a full season he’d be on a pace for 25-30 goal season, and 120+pims. not too bad.Also leading the team in shots. Don’t know if I’d call that “over hyped”. He is not gonna put up 100 points, but he’s pretty much on pace to have exact same “1 good year” you were referring too.

      He has more goals than: (power forwards-ish)
      Burrows
      Doan
      Horton
      Lucic
      Eriksson
      Franzen
      Tied with Iginla, Pacioretty and Callahan.

      • lateralous - Apr 25, 2013 at 3:34 PM

        While not the center, Elias has been on his line all year, so Clarkson is getting set up with as many good scoring chances as if he played with a better center.

        Clarkson is good at what he does (effort, scoring dirty goals and has a deceptive shot) but there are too many holes in his game to overspend on him. If he goes for more than 4 million, which I’m sure he will, I hope Lou lets him walk.

      • 19to77 - Apr 25, 2013 at 3:39 PM

        Brings toughness, leadership, a bit of confidence to the locker room, and key net-front presence. Guy’s basically Scott Hartnell with an appropriate cap hit. Which, by the way, is another power forward he’s outshining this season. And he’s not on a line with Claude freaking Giroux.

      • devilsarethebest - Apr 25, 2013 at 4:25 PM

        Shows what you know. The Devils have a very deep slew of young talented centers. It is the talented wings that are lacking.

      • phillyphanatic77 - Apr 25, 2013 at 6:14 PM

        19to77, Just to let you know Hartnell has barely played with Giroux this season. And the way ppl are talking on here, most seem to think Clarksons gonna get $5mil+… and that cap hit won’t be so “appropriate”. He’s a nice player but he’s just not worth that. Hartnell is overpaid but his resume atleast warrants $4mil+. 96 goals in 6+ seasons does not translate to a $5 mil cap hit, it just doesn’t. No matter how much grit/leadership he brings.

  4. jpelle82 - Apr 25, 2013 at 3:07 PM

    other teams will make it interesting, the big name free agency market will be thin this year now that getzlaf, perry, semin and others have signed extensions. depending on what iginla chooses to do after the penguins playoff run, clarkson would be probably the most sought after forward. if he were smart he should capitalize on the dry market and take the biggest $$ amount he can, chances are it wont happen again for him as a one time 30 goal scorer to get a huge payday.

  5. withseidelinn - Apr 25, 2013 at 3:33 PM

    I can see another team throwing $5 mil + at him for 3-4 years. Not saying he is worth that money, but a guy like this is most likely best suited being a complimentary piece on a team that is just on the brink of really dominating their conference, kind of like Minnesota, and a lot of GMs will overpay to have that. With that being said, if NJ fails to sign him, all hope for them is lost unless Zajac and Henrique can turn things around. Still think it’ll be a few rough years for NJ once Brodeur and Elias are gone. Interesting to see how this plays out. Maybe Lamoriello’s tactic of no negotiations during the regular season will start to bite him in the ass…

    • jpelle82 - Apr 25, 2013 at 4:04 PM

      i see him as a scottie hartnell type guy with more upside. hartnell got 5 mill a year at 30yrs old, i figure someone will overpay for clarkson somewhere in that 5-6 mill per year ballpark. he brings some toughness and agitation too, he could fit in anywhere but at what cost will be interesting to me to see.

      • phillyphanatic77 - Apr 25, 2013 at 5:51 PM

        While I agree that Hartnell and Clarkson are very similar players, how exactly does Clarkson have more upside? Hartnell is one year older but has six 20-goal seasons on his resume. Clarkson has one (two if you include his pace this year). Hartnell got $4.75 coming off a 37-goal year and that was an overpay. Maybe if Clarkson got a new deal following his 30-goal campaign he’d get something close to that, but there’s no way the Devils approach a $5 mil cap hit for a glorified grinder with scoring touch. It only takes one team to overpay but $5-6 is ridiculous, IMO. I’m not saying Clarkson isn’t a good player but part of the reason Hartnell got paid is bc of his overall body of work. Clarkson had a career high 46 pts last yr, and his next highest is 32. That just doesn’t translate to a $5 mil cap hit, and I’d think most GMs would agree.

      • jpelle82 - Apr 26, 2013 at 3:14 PM

        hartnell got paid cause holmgren is an idiot. he proved he wasnt worth that paycheck this year. he didnt even have to touch hartnell’s contract until this off season and will regret doing it too early now.

  6. sjsharks66 - Apr 25, 2013 at 3:41 PM

    I would REALLY like it if the Sharks picked him up.

    • jpelle82 - Apr 25, 2013 at 4:09 PM

      sharks were the first team to come to mind if he goes west…boston will probably throw him an offer though

  7. jb8383 - Apr 25, 2013 at 3:47 PM

    I just hope he’s not asking $5-$6 million because there is no way he is getting that from Lou. I don’t want Lou to give him that either. That said, I’d like to see him stay a Devil so I hope they can work something out.

  8. vanindeed - Apr 25, 2013 at 10:36 PM

    Clarkson is a player any team would covet as long as he is not shooting for the moon (which he probably is)

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