It’s been about four crazy days in the drama-filled life of new Winnipeg Jets’ player Pierre-Luc Dubois. After a ton of drama with the Columbus Blue Jackets, late last week Dubois was traded to the Jets with a 2022 third-round pick for Patrik Laine and Jack Roslovic. The drama in Columbus was over.
After Dubois had signed a two-year bridge deal on December 31, 2020, he almost immediately asked for a trade. While were rumors about why he wanted out of Columbus, so far no one is certain they’ve heard the real story – not yet.
Dubois must quarantine before he plays for the Jets; however, the 22-year-old will be a huge addition to the Jets’ roster. He had basically quit working hard this season with the Blue Jackets and only had a single goal. However, his potential was really obvious last postseason, where he scored 10 points in 10 games.
It Wasn’t Tortorella, Dubois Announced
As we have reported earlier in NHLTradeTalk.com, Dubois announced that the reason he wanted to leave the Columbus Blue Jackets had nothing to do with coach John Tortorella. Obviously, when he was seen interacting with Tortorella during the 2019-20 postseason, it would have been easy to land on the fact that he was at odds with his now-former Blue Jackets’ head coach. However, Dubois says that wasn’t the case.
Dubois suggested that he knew what kind of coach Tortorella and that he believed his former coach had the players’ best interests at heart.
Specifically, Dubois noted that, “The consensus I got, was that he helps guys, he motivates guys, he gets guys going. For some people, that might be the reason, but it’s not.” He added, “I can take it, it’s nothing personal.”
However, Dubois admitted that when he a 20-year-old, it might have been tough for him to see that Tortorella was trying to help him. However, when he reviews his career, he thinks Tortorella helped make him a better player.
When Will Dubois Be Permitted to Play
Now that Dubois is coming to the Jets, the biggest question is when he’ll be eligible to play for them. This is no normal season, so it isn’t as easy as boarding a play in Ohio and landing in Manitoba. Given the impact of COVID-19, after traveling to Canada, Dubois will need to quarantine and it isn’t clear how long that quarantine must be.
Obviously, because the Jets want him in their line-up sooner, rather than later, they’re hoping the modified, shorter quarantine rules employed for training camp could be employed during the regular season as well. However, we’re unsure yet if that will be the case.
Jets Make Some Roster and Will Work to Help Dubois Learn About the Team
On January 23, the Jets made some roster moves. In one of them, they moved Dubois to a non-roster status. Again, at that time there was no idea what quarantine rules would apply to his situation.
On January 24, Dubois announced that “The last thing I heard was yesterday and it was two weeks. And once those two weeks ends, I’ll be ready. If it’s before, I’ll be ready, too, but I’m not nervous about the quarantine part.”
During the time Dubois quarantines, the Jets intend to involve Dubois in team meetings using Zoom. Dubois has also been given some homework: he will be watching games and review tapes so that he can better learn his new teammates’ tendencies.
Dubois Feels at Home in Winnipeg Already
One thing Dubois noted after only a day with the Jets that he already felt at home. One additional thing that helps him be more comfortable is that his father Eric is an assistant coach with the Manitoba Moose. That is close to home because the Moose are the Jets’ AHL affiliate. It might also be good news for Jets’ fans who hope that the youngster will want to stay in Winnipeg.
Dubois noted that, “My parents used to go back to Montreal during the summer but now they are staying in Winnipeg full time.”
Dubois added, “The first time I came here was after the world juniors (in 2016). I had a week off so I came to Winnipeg. Every time we’d play the Jets I’d come home for dinner and my mom would cook for me. I was here in quarantine (last spring). Obviously everything was closed but whether it was driving around the city — or me and my sister bought bikes and we just went around — it seems really beautiful.”
Dubois already has made friends on the team. Specifically, he noted, “I got familiar with De Lucas, which I’m really excited to go back to. I’m looking forward to getting to know the city more.” (from “Dubois already feels right at home in Winnipeg after joining Jets in Laine trade,” Ted Wyman, Winnipeg Sun, 24/01/21).
Where Currently Dubois Is with the Jets
Dubois expects to quarantine for 14 days before he joins the Jets for full-time duty. In the meantime, the Jets came back to beat the Edmonton Oilers 6-4 on Tuesday night so the team is having some success without him.
The Jets have the reigning Vezina Trophy winner, and now they have a 22-year-old youngster who’s home is in Winnipeg. That might be both a good recipe for success during the short-term and the long-term as well.
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