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Marlies sign forward Scott Sabourin

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Auston Matthews says who?

Toronto Maple Leafs v Ottawa Senators Photo by Andre Ringuette/NHLI via Getty Images

The Marlies announced this morning that they have signed winger Scott Sabourin to an AHL contract.

A quick look at his boxcars will reveal that Scott Sabourin is not being signed for his power play prowess. He scores about five goals a year in the AHL and has more penalty minutes than games played nearly every season there. He’s a minor-league enforcer plain and simple, and his first (and maybe only) 35 NHL games occurred this past season for the Ottawa Senators, who were themselves a minor-league team. No shame in that job, and while the progressive fanbase of the Leafs is less than enamoured of these players, the AHL is not the NHL. Fights happen.

You may be wondering why you vaguely remember Sabourin’s name, and it’s probably because Auston Matthews didn’t know his name. The two of them had a shoving match last preseason, and Matthews pointedly tried to look at the name on the back of Sabourin’s jersey as a who-are-you kind of thing. Leaf fans thought it was funny, Sens fans thought it was an arrogant insult towards a hardworking hockey lifer, and I’m sure no one’s perspective would be any different if the teams involved had been reversed.

Welcome to the organization, Scott.