Paul Higgins was drafted out of high school where he had played for the Henry Carr Crusaders in Toronto.
During the 1979-80 season he put together a very solid season for the Crusaders, scoring 63 points. When Toronto Maple Leafs drafted him in 1980 (200th overall) they really were not sure about what they had.
Paul was sent to the junior Toronto Marlboros (OHA) where he quickly established himself as a tough guy with a short fuse. He also played for the Kitchener Rangers (OHA). In 1981-82 he got a three game call-up from the Maple Leafs. Paul engaged in a couple of brawls but didn't do much aside from that.
During the 1982-83 season he played in 22 games for the Maple Leafs. He saw very limited ice time and was in the lineup for one thing only. To fight.
Despite only playing an odd shift here and there he amassed 135 penalty minutes in 22 games. Unfortunately Paul caused some controversy in the dressing room. Nobody talked about it publicly, but it was obvious that there were some tension between Paul and his Maple Leafs teammates.
Paul's off ice problems was the reason why he only played four games in 1983-84 for the Carolina Thunderbirds in the Atlantic Coast Hockey League.
In the summer of 1984 Paul was sentenced to 60 days in jail for dangerous driving and possession of a dangerous weapon. It wasn't the first or last time that Paul had trouble with the law.
That 1983-84 season was his last. Paul's career was over at 22 before it even really started.