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Talk of Dubois To Montreal Quieting, A New Favorite Emerges

The Montreal Canadiens were the favorites to land Pierre-Luc Dubois. That may no longer be the case as another team has stepped up.

For months, NHL insiders believed it was inevitable that Pierre-Luc Dubois would wind up with the Montreal Canadiens. Seemingly the only team on his radar, the forward was reportedly using any leverage he had to work his way to the Habs in a trade or sign his next contract in a way that allowed him to choose Montreal as a free agent. That may no longer be the case.

There are indications that the Winnipeg Jets and Pierre-Luc Dubois’ agent, Pat Brisson, are collaborating to facilitate a trade. According to David Pagnotta of The Fourth Period, multiple teams are involved in the discussions, adding complexity to the situation. Dubois’ ultimate destination will likely influence the terms of any new contract.

During the previous season, Dubois played in 73 games, recording 27 goals and 63 points. As a restricted free agent, he is expected to receive a contract extension that will pay him handsomely for that production. It won’t be in Winnipeg as Eric Stephens of The Athletic reports that Dubois has informed the Winnipeg Jets that he has no intention of signing a new deal, not even a short-term agreement leading to unrestricted free agency in 2024.

While the Montreal Canadiens have engaged in talks with the Jets regarding Dubois, Scott Billeck of the Winnipeg Sun suggests that the likelihood of a trade to Montreal is diminishing. On the other hand, momentum appears to be building around discussions involving the Los Angeles Kings.

Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman mentioned on his 32 Thoughts podcast that the Kings have emerged as contenders in the Dubois trade talks. It is worth noting that the Kings made a previous attempt to acquire Dubois when he was traded from Columbus to Winnipeg. The Canadiens are reportedly reluctant to match the contract offer the Kings are prepared to make, which could exceed $9.15 million per season. Dubois is seeking a deal in the range of Dylan Larkin’s contract, which is $8.75 million per season, according to Friedman.

If the Kings present the most appealing package to acquire Dubois, Ken Wiebe of Sportsnet suggests that either Quinton Byfield or Gabe Vilardi would likely be the centerpiece of the trade, potentially accompanied by right-handed defenseman Sean Durzi.

Next: Milan Lucic Given Permission to Speak with Teams, Canucks Interested

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