Pens forward Pascal Dupuis has been everything Pittsburgh could’ve asked for and more this year.
Adjusting through other players’ injuries to adding new faces, Dupuis has still carried the same fire he’s kept aflame throughout the entire season.
And who would’ve thought?
Who would’ve thought Pascal Dupuis would end up being the best piece the Pens got out of Marian Hossa trade?
Recording 38 points (20G, 18A) in 48 regular-season games this year, Dupuis skated to an astronomical plus-31 rating. And albeit that he has Sidney Crosby as his center — he still finished with fine stats when Crosby was sidelined for a month.
He’s continued his success in the playoffs too.
Leading the league with 7 goals in the playoffs, Dupuis has added three assists and delivered 28 hits — which is good for third on the team.
A force on the penalty-kill, Dupuis has sacrificed his body a number of times. Blocking 10 shots thus far, he ranks second on the team amongst forwards in that category.
But when the season is over — will Dupuis stay?
While the team would like to keep Dupuis — because he’s earned every right to stay — will the team ultimately have enough to retain him?
Knowing that the Pens will eventually have to extend Kris Letang and Evgeni Malkin’s contracts, Pittsburgh will also have a lot of other unrestricted free agents to deliberate over.
With Craig Adams, Matt Cooke, Mark Eaton, Jarome Iginla, Brenden Morrow, Douglas Murray all set for free agency — it is going to be interesting to see how the Penguins treat Dupuis.
Although it would be worth it to have him stay, one has to think that they’ll at least try to re-sign Iginla or Morrow, and with the amount of prospects on the horizon (including one Beau Bennett) it’s hard to imagine Dupuis will stay.
If this is Dupuis’ last ride with the Pens, hopefully he’s leaving with a Cup.
A character in the locker room and a class-act on and off the ice — Dupuis was certainly a find.