Dubois hasn't asked for a trade, high hopes for Jets next season
Pierre-Luc Dubois, 24, recently signed his qualifying offer, being inked to a 1 year, $6,000,000 contract. Upon expiry of the deal, Dubois will be a restricted free agent again, with one more year of RFA/arbitration rights.
Why is the one year deal so important? Well, many rumours have been spreading around that Dubois is looking for a way out of Winnipeg, with hopes of landing in Montreal. Dubois made it very clear in his media availability that he is hearing all of the things being posted online attached to his name.
One of the biggest things he said, was that he has not requested a trade.
When he was asked about the idea of being a Jet long-term, he responded with "We will deal with that when my contract is up", which will be next season.
Pierre-Luc Dubois's agent, Pat Brisson, said on TVA Sports, "Montreal is a city he would probably...I can talk about it because he doesn't have a contract at the moment - he's a restricted free agent...Montreal is probably a city he would like to play in That's all I can say about that" a few weeks ago.
This was taken to heart by many Jets fans, especially with the news of Dubois wanting to test unrestricted free agency in the summer of 2024 when his RFA rights expire.
Dubois said in his media availability that those comments made by Brisson were blown out of proportion, which is fair. Many players want to play for their home town of course, we have seen Steven Stamkos come so close to signing with Toronto, which was then turned to John Tavares signing in his home town, and even as recent as this season, Matthew Tkachuk, before he was traded, told the Calgary Flames that St. Louis was a team he would sign long term in, and Claude Giroux went to the Ottawa Senators in free agency, where he is from.
Where people started to get really nervous, was when reports started coming out that Dubois attended the draft, which happened to take place in Montreal. Many reports said that it was becuase Dubois was anticipating a trade on the draft floor. Dubois denied this.
"I went to the draft because it was 15 minutes from where I live and I am a fan of hockey", Dubois said.
I know many Jets fans want Dubois to want to be a Jet, and have had a hard time with the Liane situation being reporduced as the Dubois situation develops. Some commenters here even said that Dubois is just going to say the right things, be bland, and say what the fans want to hear. While I expected this as well, I didn't get that feeling form the availability.
Dubois mentions that the team has a chip on their shoulder, and is motivated to be a better hockey team this upcoming season. The Jets are certainly built as a better team than the standings show from last season.
I would certainly expect Dubois to be a member of the Winnipeg Jets until the trade deadline, and then conversations may change a bit. If the Jets are in a good place looking towards the playoffs, than there is next to no chance Dubois gets dealt. If the Jets are on the outside looking in, it could be a good time to gather some 2023 assets.
Dubois' comments should have given you some sigh of relief. I think he said a lot of the right things, and was genuine about most of it, if not all of it. As Dubois said, he doesn't even know what he is making for dinner. Things can change very quickly.
Does he want to play in Montreal? Absolutely. Does that mean he wants to leave Winnipeg to do so? Not necessarily.
Let's see how he responds on the ice, and how the team is playing. I don't think there is nearly as much pressure on Kevin Cheveldayoff as we think, in terms of the Dubois situation. Time will answer the questions we have.
What are your thoughts on the Dubois availability? Did he help heal some wounds from the past few weeks? Let me know down below.
Thank you for reading, I hope you have a great day!