New Jersey Devils 2012 Stanley Cup Team: Where are they now?

Ilya Kovalchuk #17 of the New Jersey Devils (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Ilya Kovalchuk #17 of the New Jersey Devils (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /
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David Clarkson the New Jersey Devils celebrates against the Los Angeles Kings during Game Five. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
David Clarkson of the New Jersey Devils. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) /

David Clarkson

David Clarkson was a really fun player to watch during his prime years on the New Jersey Devils, but if his departure tells us anything, it’s that grass isn’t always greener on the other side.

Leading up to the 2012 playoffs, David Clarkson scored a whopping 30 goals and added 16 assists, topping his previous bests of 17 and 15, respectively. Clarkson earned a role in the top-nine after spending most of his prior years as a fourth-line grinder. Clearly, he made the most of his opportunity.

A forward with generally good defensive results, David Clarkson found ways to end up on the score sheet too. Clarkson mostly made his name in the front of the net, and scored some important goals doing so.

In the playoff games leading up to the Cup Final, Clarkson scored three goals and seven assists. All three of Clarkson’s goals were game-winners. They were: Game Two against the Philadelphia Flyers, Game Five against the Philadelphia Flyers, and Game Two against the New York Rangers.

David Clarkson did not score a goal against the Los Angeles Kings in the 2012 Cup Final, but he did have two assists. Clarkson’s ice time tended to vary greatly all throughout the postseason and dropped a lot after the first two games against the Kings. Clarkson generally scored more points with more ice time, so his inconsistent deployment was just one of many oversights by Pete DeBoer during his tenure as New Jersey Devils coach.

David Clarkson scored 15 goals in the lockout-shortened 2012-13 season before signing a seven-year, $36.75 million contract with the Toronto Maple Leafs the following summer. Over the next three years, Clarkson would score just 17 goals in total, and was traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets only one year into his Maple Leafs contract. Clarkson played just 26 games with the Blue Jackets before retiring.

Since his retirement, David Clarkson has lived in Colorado full-time and briefly coached for Upper Arlington High School in Upper Arlington, Ohio. Clarkson’s name re-surfaced on January 9, 2023 when he was named as Vice President and Director of Player Development for the Colorado Grit of the NAHL.