In a classic case of miscommunication, Toronto Maple Leafs General Manager Kyle Dubas re-signed defenseman Martin Marincin to a one year, $700,000 extension. Coach Sheldon Keefe had previously petitioned Dubas for another mannequin to be used during Leafs practices.
When interviewed, Dubas said with a chuckle, “He [Keefe] just came in and said he wanted another one of those things that just kind of stands there and doesn’t move during practice. I just assumed he was telling me that he wanted Marincin re-signed.”
It was apparently an easy mistake to make, several times this season when players or coaches were asked to assist Marincin off the ice, they ended up taking the mannequin instead.
“It’s something that’s happened quite a few times, that’s for sure” Goaltending Coach Steve Briere laughed when asked, “but Martin’s fine with it, at least he seems to be. He just kind of stands there and takes it.”
Even Leafs’ reporter Kristen Shilton joined in the fun, attributing the above video of Marincin to the work of the mannequin. When scout and noted Montreal Canadiens homer Grant McCagg saw the above video he said “I talked with four scouts, three said that the Canadien’s mannequin is better [referring to Ben Chiarot], another wouldn’t specify, but did say that the [Leafs] mannequin would struggle to generate offense from the blue line.”
At the end of the day, it’s a reasonable price to pay for a back-up to the practice mannequin. Dubas said he’s not done yet and that the search to acquire a back-up goaltender could be completed in just a few days. Although he didn’t want to give anything away, Hockey Embassy was able to find a picture of the goaltender the Leafs are targeting.