Pascal Dupuis: Recent ‘In The Room’ Episode Highlights How Far He Has Come


The Pittsburgh Penguins released a new episode of their in-season series, ‘In The Room’, this week and one of the most potent aspects of the behind-the-scenes piece was the in-depth look at Pascal Dupuis‘ recent health scare.

Beyond showcasing the deep emotional ramifications that come with a situation as serious as Dupuis’, the episode highlighted just how far Duper has come in the league and in this game.

We saw the fans at the Consol chanting his name as they proudly held up signs. We saw teammates gushing praises in regards to Dupuis’ leadership and importance to the team on and off the ice.

He certainly wasn’t always given such weighty respect.

Dupuis’ career serves as an exemplary case of one who had to work his way up to the top from humble beginnings.

Undrafted coming out of juniors (despite posting a 50-goal, 105-point stat line in his final QMJHL season), the quick-footed winger was finally given a chance to break into the NHL by the Minnesota Wild, who signed him prior to the 2000-01 season.

After a strong 20-goal campaign in his second year there, injuries hampered the rest of Dupuis’ time with the Wild, prompting him to be traded from the Wild to the New York Rangers.

And then from the Rangers to the Atlanta Thrashers.

In the 2007-08 season, Dupuis’ career took a historic turn, however, after the Thrashers decided to throw in Dupuis as a side-dish on the Marian Hossa trade to Pittsburgh.

Flourishing in Pittsburgh, Dupuis grew and progressed as a player each season, proving to be the real gem of the trade after Hossa bailed out after one season. His success in Pittsburgh culminated in a 25-goal 2011-12 campaign and a subsequent 20-goal performance in the lockout-shortened season that followed (a goal-scoring pace that would have seen him tally over 30 in a full 82 games).

Dupuis rose through the ranks to become one of the Pens most reliable players, and then one of their most important, as he developed some lethal chemistry with captain Sidney Crosby and fellow winger Chris Kunitz.

Even as he performed consistently on the NHL’s most dangerous first line, Dupuis still was unable to shake the perception of being solid and skilled and reliable, but mostly important due only to being a preferred linemate of Crosby’s.

But now, with a health situation taking him away from the team, it has become clear that Pascal Dupuis has grown into one of the Penguins’ most vital contributors in his own right.

He is one of their most important veteran leaders on and off the ice, and he was there through it all – the Finals loss, the Cup redemption, Crosby’s concussion, Geno’s knee injuries.

Dupuis has helped guide this team forward through all of it and, as evidenced by this previously mentioned footage, he has clearly earned the respect of those in his locker room.

While seeing Dupuis emotionally speak about his family makes it clear that hockey is far from the most important thing in his life right now, fans and teammates alike will all maintain relentless hope that the #9 has another recovery in him, and that he’ll be back with the team soon enough.