NHL

Leafs reacquire David Clarkson and his contract, send Sparks to Vegas

The Toronto Maple Leafs announced Tuesday that they have acquired Clarkson and a fourth-round pick from the Vegas Golden Knights in exchange for goaltender Garret Sparks.

Forward is expected to be placed on long-term injured reserve by Toronto

David Clarkson's contract is returning to the Toronto Maple Leafs through a trade involving Garret Sparks. (Chris Young/The Canadian Press)

David Clarkson's famously hefty contract has come full-circle.

The Toronto Maple Leafs announced Tuesday that they have acquired Clarkson and a fourth-round pick from the Vegas Golden Knights in exchange for goaltender Garret Sparks.

Clarkson, who has not played since suffering a career-ending injury in March 2016, is entering the final year of a seven-year, $36.75-million US contract he signed with the Maple Leafs before the 2013-14 season. He is expected to be placed on long-term injured reserve by Toronto at some point to clear up cap space.

Goaltender Garret Sparks was traded by the Toronto Maple Leafs to the Las Vegas Golden Knights in exchange for a fourth-round draft pick and forward David Clarkson. (Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press)

Clarkson, who had a career-high 30 goals and 46 points with the New Jersey Devils in 2011-12, disappointed in his short time with his hometown Maple Leafs. He had just 15 goals and 11 assists in two seasons with the club before being traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets for Nathan Horton, who has spent every season with Toronto on long-term injury reserve.

Horton is also entering the final year of his contract.

Vegas also signed defenceman Deryk Engelland on Tuesday to a one-year deal for the upcoming season.

The contract includes a $700,000 base salary and incentives that could bring the total value of the deal to $1.5 million.

The 37-year-old Engelland played in 74 games last season and finished with 12 points and 18 penalty minutes. He set career-marks with 152 blocked shots and 165 hits.

The Knights took Engelland during the 2017 expansion draft.