NHL Canadian Corner – September 23, 2013.

Fallout from the Maple Leafs Sunday brawl with the Sabres, Oilers lose Sam Gagner to a broken jaw, plus updates on Brian Gionta, Cory Conacher and more.

David Clarkson (center) faces suspension for leaving the bench during Leafs-Sabres brawl.

Leafs winger David Clarkson (center) faces suspension for leaving the bench during his clubs brawl with the Sabres.

TORONTO STAR: Maple Leafs forward David Clarkson faces an automatic ten-game regular season suspension for leaving the bench during the club’s donnybrook with the Buffalo Sabres on Sunday night. Leafs forward Phil Kessel could also face suspension for swinging his stick at Sabres hulking enforcer John Scott, who could also face a suspension for sparking the 12-player brawl by threatening to “jump” Kessel. The brawl overshadowed Joffrey Lupul’s return to the Leafs lineup.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If, as expected, Clarkson receives ten games, he’ll be out of the lineup until October 25. Kessel may have been defending himself against the much-larger Scott, but swinging his stick twice at Scott’s legs could land him at least a two-game suspension.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: The Oilers lost center Sam Gagner to a broken jaw after he was struck in the face by an errant stick swing by Vancouver Canucks forward Zach Kassian.

VANCOUVER SUN: Kassian could face supplemental discipline for that stick swing, while teammate Dale Wiese could face suspension for a hit to the head of Oilers center Taylor Hall.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There’s no question Kassian’s stick struck Gagner in the face, but it was accidental. Still, his recklessness could result in a suspension of less than five games. Gagner’s injury, meanwhile, leaves a big void at center for the Oilers, who are already missing Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (shoulder) until November.

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Canadiens captain Brian Gionta was honored Saturday with the Jean Beliveau award for his charity and community work. Gionta is currently sidelined from off-season biceps surgery but hopes to return to action later this week.

OTTAWA SUN: Senators forward Cory Conacher will get a shot at landing a top-six spot.

CALGARY SUN: Karri Ramo, Joey MacDonald and Reto Berra are still jockeying for the role of Flames starting goalie.

WINNIPEG SUN: An impressive camp could earn Jets prospect and 2013 first round pick Josh Morrissey his first pro contract.


  1. This is the reason we have Orr and McClaren for every one who says we dont need 2 goons, You put 1 of em out to fight Scott with Phil in that situation you still have one on the bench if any one else from the Sabers was feeling brave, there situation averted and no need for Clarkson to jump on the ice. If thats the style your team is going to play you need more then 1 heavy weight in the regular season.

    Randy with the brain cramp (as much as Clarkson for jumping off the bench) putting that line on the ice when he seen Scott. If Scott would have ended up pounding Phil in to the ice it could have been disastrous to the start of the season.

    I will say Bernier looked good against Miller. Not that it matters but always fun to see goalies fight.

    • Totally Disagree, you only need one tough guy in Orr. Depth scoring is more important. If Orr was in the game this would have never happened. Mclarens 700k is more important. I do agree tho that it was a stupid decision by Cayle. But why wasnt Orr dressed for this game, is he injured. And goalie fights are far and few between. That was fun

      • Depth scoring is important but, with 3 lines that look like they are all could contribute some offense, you need your bigs as well in the regular season. Clarkson has some jam but no need to waste him fighting every couple of nights. Teams like Boston Buffalo now even Montreal and Ottawa have a couple guys who will drop the mits and Id rather not have top 6 guys having to do too much of that. 2 fourth line guys to go against other teams tough guys is needed or else it will be right back to the Wilson days where the Leafs were pushed around way too much.

        • I agree Shticky !!!

      • Orr and McLaren can actually play Hockey they are worth every penny at that rate …they can contribute on the board like any other bottom 6 guy or 4th liner can around the league so that makes no difference in regards to what you said …Mclaren if given more ice time is actually a very good hockey player !!

        • And for once I agree with you, they play fourth line minutes which isnt much and contribute as much as many other 4th line guys who dont scrap, and out of the 2 of them you are right McClaren can actually play a bit. Unlike guys like Scott and Kassian etc.

    • I respectfully have to take back my comments about Phil Kessel over the past year ….he has surprised me this year …hes finally becoming a man !!! LOL ..GOOD FOR YOU PHIL!

      Interesting enough I wrote a spot yesterday in the Canadian corner here about how Edmonton is finding this fate as there stars are being taken advantage of and now in the updates and Rumours they too are looking for a enforcer ….there stars are getting taken advantage of over the past 3 years and they need help BIGTIME as per the hit on Hall by Weise the other day !
      I like ORR and Mclaren on the 4th line …this will never happen again as even if one of them fights and gets a game misconduct you still have the other one on the bench to help with the remaining crap for the rest of the game and in the next few games to come ….Leafs really surprised me this training camp …they finally have some organizational depth and there are guys on the depth chart that can really play in the NHL and have some great size and skill ….GOOD JOB BURKIE !!!
      The elafs have at least 2 full bottom 6 lines that can replace anyone on the Leafs regular roster and still be a quality NHL player as seen last night they finally have choices !!!

      • I have a feeling this year Phil puts it all together.

        • Iam hoping the team puts it all together !!!

          We may have the best 2 goalies in the league right now ..IMO
          Deep at 3 lines still need a power forward winger but Ashton or DaVane have proved to fit that roll in the corners so that can be done internally and Leivo is looking like a huge score !!
          Gardiner needs to stop getting caught in the corners too deep on the rush !

  2. i just think you have a tough guy in minors and call him up for games if you feel like this will happen, but unless they have two tough guys on there team you dont need two goons. We have Mclaren Bolland and Clarkson, thats just under 450k clarkson will loose, to bad that doesnt come off the cap lmao

  3. Please…I am been on both ends of that kind of “accidental” high stick…Kessel’s wood chopping was more accidental.

  4. i miss Wade Belak, great character guy. Who would have ever known he was going through what he was. RIP buddy. I always loved Rick Rypien and wanted the Leafs to sign him, instead he signed with winnipeg. And Boogaard, he was tough, probably the best fighter in the leaugue.

  5. Kessel should get more than a two game suspension. Kessel raises his had first, then Scott reacts and drops the gloves and goes after him. Kessel whacks Scott once on the legs, but then whacked Scott again after he was tied up with another guy. Then he went over after the scrum while Scott was tied up with another guy and speared him.

    Kessel ultimately got a match penalty, so he really should get more than two games. More importantly, Kessell doesn’t come out of this looking too good. He doesn’t want to fight Scott, so he slashes him, but then when he finds a smaller guy, he drops the gloves with him and bloodies his nose. Then he goes over and appears to talk sh!t to Scott and spear him while he’s tied up with another guy.

    • JD – that is what I saw also. Kessel touched Scott first and then when Scott wanted to go Kessel backed off using his stick. You know their talking at least 10 games for Kassian’s accidental stick to the face incident – Kessel used his stick with intent and it warrants more than 2 games. Kessel wasn’t being a man, he was being a chickensh*t. I had respect for him and thought he was a good all around player – but now he is nothing but a talented punk.

      Yes, Scott was on the ice to send a message – Kessel should have just continued play as Scott was ready for the faceoff – Kessel made the choice to escalate it.

      • Scott said I am going to jump you !!!!!
        He is 6 FOOT 7 2 70 pounds …please give me a break …we would all do the same thing !!!

        If your Kessel or not ……Kessel wasnt looking for a fight he was scared !!! Like most other people !!!

        Goalies give slashes all the time in the crease same thing

        • @Backchecking

          Then Kessel should have waited until the faceoff and turtled until his teammates or the refs got there. Running away, waiting for Scott to lock up with one of your teammates and then slashing him on the back of the legs are not the actions of somebody looking to avoid getting beatup. I don’t know if Scott was really going to jump him, but if I was Scott I definitely would jump him next time.

          • Turtle? The guy is twice your size all turtling is going to do is get you thumped on by a far bigger man. Dumb…keep away and keep him back from you till one of your bigger teammates can help out. Ever try to fight someone who has nearly 100 lbs (not 100 lbs of belly fat) on ya? Turtling aint going to help you out, on the contrary its just making it easier to get beat on.

      • nice one Steve you bozo, Scott wasnt a man, he went after a non fighter.

    • This comment is dumb. You’re trying to say Kessel was wrong in trying to chop down a guy literally twice his size, a guy who’s only role is to punch faces, and you think an all star player is wrong in defending himself against a player who has no reason or right to jump a much smaller player. JD give your head a shake and let’s see what you would of said if it was one of you star players who never fights back away from someone twice his size. The other punk that Kessel schooled and bloodied up his face was Kessel’s size and he again targeted Kessel. This time it was more evenly matched and Kessel surprisingly beat him senceless.
      You seem to think you know what went on and if you read what was said, Scott admitted him threatening him but was ‘joking’ which you can see by the video how much he was joking as his gloves were off and on Kessel the minute the puck was dropped. Stop hating.

  6. I forgot to mention, it was highly entertaining. Bernier vs Miller was fun. Who knew Bernier could throw.

    • dude your comment makes no sense, he was clearly going after Kessel, Kessel should get 1 game at most. the spear was even that bad if you look at it, second slash maybe a game. I like two tough guys in lineup but i dont wanna loose franson

  7. Good for Kessel, but I don’t think he should have been put in that situation. Clarkson is a bonehead but wanted to help. For anyone saying exhibition games are meaningless…

  8. I didn’t see the game.. just highlights..

    The Buffalo bench was mad at the fight between Devane & Tropp. Not sure what caused that.

    So Buffalo sends out the goon that is Scott. The guy can’t play. He’s only there for his fists.. and these are the type of players that have to be out of the game. If you are a tough guy that has some type of skill (other than your fists) okay..

    But Carlyle… what were you doing? You had last change. You had to realize Buffalo bench would be upset with the fight that just happened. You should have known that when you saw Scott on the ice. The Leafs had last change. You let your best player stand next to that goon.

    If the ref would not have let the Leafs change.. then call a time out to instruct your players what to do after the puck is dropped. That’s what McLean did in game 3 against the Habs last season. Mtl had been running around… and when he saw who they had on the ice near the end of the game… he called a time out to instruct his players to back off after the puck was dropped. The Sens were leading 6-1 — but this was about protecting your players. That’s what Carlyle should have done.

    I can see why Kessel did what he did… not that I condone that type of play. He shouldn’t have been on the ice in the first place.

    Fights just as the puck is dropped have got to stop. I’m all for a good fight after a play.. but this ‘staged’ fighting has got to stop… and it’s up to the league to get tough with these goons.