David Clarkson is a professional hockey player who is a member of the Toronto Maple Leafs. This is his first year with Toronto, after signing a contract in the summer worth just under $37M USD. Already a millionaire from his previous contracts with New Jersey, Clarkson is not hurting for money.
The HBO show 24/7 followed Clarkson and his team mates for several days before and during the 2014 Winter Classic. The episodes provided a rare look into the lives of players on and off the ice. In one particular segment, the show tags along with Clarkson as he makes his way to the Air Canada Centre for a Toronto home game. For most pro hockey players, getting to the rink for a home game involves getting in their expensive vehicles and driving to the arena where they park in secured spots in the facility. Clarkson sometimes takes a decidedly different route to work.
A native of the Toronto area, Clarkson drives to a subway station outside of the downtown core. There, he parks his car like a normal, non-millionaire person, walks down to the platform and takes the subway to the arena. In the clip above, you can see Clarkson do just that. He even has to stand at one point. Clarkson rides in almost total anonymity as perhaps people couldn’t even fathom a Leaf taking a subway to the game. That’s almost impossible to believe in a hockey crazy town like Toronto. Clarkson perhaps benefits from being a very new player to the team as opposed to an established star like Phil Kessel. I applaud Clarkson for taking a more pedestrian way to work. I wonder if he’ll continue to ride the subway now that people know his routine.
I’ve often wondered if any of the Vancouver Canucks could take the Skytrain to Rogers Arena for a game. Logistically, it’s possible since a station is located right outside the rink. Practically though, I’m not sure if it could work. Vancouver is a town that loves its hockey and even the fourth-liners get recognized fairly often in public. I cannot imagine one of the Sedins or Ryan Kesler taking the Expo line to Stadium station.