One of the NHL's premier restricted free agent forwards is off the market.
New Jersey has signed power forward David Clarkson
, 26, to a new three-year deal that according to several published reports will pay Clarkson $8 million across the life of the contract.
"David has become one of our core players, and we are delighted to have him under a multi-year contract," Devils GM Lou Lamoriello said.
Clarkson had an injury plagued 2009-10 season, appearing in just 45 games after suffering back-to-back leg injuries during the season. Clarkson still managed 11 goals and 24 points in those 46 games, but his true value to the Devils can be found in the previous season, in which he was healthy and at his most effective.
In 2008-09, Clarkson played all 82 games and scored 17 goals in just his second full NHL season. Clarkson also added 15 assists and piled up 164 penalty minutes. Clarkson had a career-high 185 penalty minutes as a rookie.
The NHL's free-agent period opens at noon Thursday.