Toronto Maple Leafs winger David Clarkson is at risk of incurring a 10-game suspension from the National Hockey League for leaving the bench during a wild brawl in the third period of a pre-season game, a punishment that would deprive the team of its most celebrated off-season acquisition.
It all began midway through the third period on Sunday night, with the Leafs hosting the Buffalo Sabres on the back end of a home-and-home. Sabres forward Corey Tropp was led off the ice, dazed and bloody, after a fight with Leafs hopeful Jamie Devane.
A line brawl erupted on the ensuing faceoff. Phil Kessel, Toronto’s leading scorer — who had already scored two goals in the game — squared off with Sabres forward Brian Flynn at centre ice. Flynn appeared to leave the bout with blood on his face.
Even the goaltenders fought, with Jonathan Bernier landing a series of right hands on Sabres counterpart Ryan Miller. Both goalies were ejected. (Photos: Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press)