Minnesota Wild's Cal Clutterbuck Sets NHL Record For Hits

Martin AverySenior Writer IMarch 25, 2009

NEW YORK - MARCH 24:  Cal Clutterbuck #22 of the Minnesota Wild fights Sean Avery #16 of the New York Rangers during the first period at Madison Square Garden March 24, 2009 in New York City.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

Cal Clutterbuck of the Minnesota Wild now owns the NHL record for hits in a season with 317. He passed the Los Angeles Kings' Dustin Brown's 311 hits of last season with seven against the New York Islanders on Tuesday, according to the Star Tribune of St. Paul, Minnesota.

The Wild won the game 6-2 over the Islanders a day after losing 2-1 to the New York Rangers, and fighting with Sean Avery. Marian Gaborik had two goals, and Owen Nolan scored the winner.

The Wild's six goals tied the club's season-high.

They remain seven points out of the playoff picture.

Clutterbuck's fight with Avery is already all over the internet. It has been posted on Youtube, and several other sites. It joins Clutterbuck's fights with Steve Staios, Ian White, Keith Yandle, Carlo Colaiacovo, Brent Sutter and others.

Most of them show Clutterbuck fighting with his helmet and visor on. After hearing criticism from Wayne Gretzky and Don Cherry, Clutterbuck took his helmet off for his fight with Avery.

Clutterbuck played junior hockey in the Ontario Hockey League with the Oshawa Generals, where he used to protect John Tavares; Tavares is expected to be the first pick in this year's NHL Entry Draft.

Clutterbuck's battled Patrick Kaleta, now with the Sabres, back in the OHL; as he has in the NHL. Kaleta messed with Tavares until Clutterbuck tackled him.

After Clutterbuck was dumped by Rangers forward Sean Avery in front of the Wild net, Avery challenged Clutterbuck to a fight, and appeared to come out on top.

A "hit" is a subjective statistic that varies from arena to arena. The "hits" have been recorded since the lockout. Clutterbuck's other statistics this year include 8 goals, 5 assists, 13 points, a -6 rating and 70 PIMS.

Over three hundred hits with only 70 PIMS indicates that he has delivered hundreds of clean, legal hits in his rookie year in the NHL. He was drafted by the Minnesota Wild in the 3rd round, 72nd overall, in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft.

After a season in the AHL with the Houston Aeros, he went to the Wild.

He played with the Toronto St. Micheal's Majors in the OHL before turning into a goal-scorer for the Oshawa Generals. He hit the 35 goal mark two years in a row with the Generals.