Keeping with the trend for our next Pittsburgh Penguins player by the numbers, we look at a defender that’s been missing on and off this season. His value, however, shouldn’t be diminished by his lack of ice time.
The thought of Brian Dumoulin being underappreciated is nothing new. When he went out with a pretty severe injury, the view wasn’t ever anything more than an “oh no, I guess he’s out too?” Maybe he was overlooked while being out because of the others there were also injured, but that’s kind of the player Dumo’s always been. Fly under the radar and get the job done.
Even with being out this season, he’s racked up substantial numbers once again for the Pittsburgh Penguins. 28 games played, 8 points (which is not his specialty), and over 21 minutes once again. When healthy, he is used as the Penguins top line eliminator.
He typically plays against the opponent’s top line as well as the majority of anything related to penalty killing. Yet, somehow gets overlooked. Potentially he is overshadowed by this blue-line mate, Kris Letang, but they both offer completely different products. Letang is more of an offensive defenseman, whereas Dumo is more of your typical defensive defender.
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Pittsburgh Penguins by the numbers: Brian Dumoulin
His long reach and ability to skate have killed the opponent’s attack time and time again this season. They are the perfect duo, but in no way should he be as undervalued as he is. Maybe not the first name to pop up when looking for leaders, but he has risen to the occasion.
Whether it’s on the ice or in the locker-room, he has been a voice for the youngsters making a push in the NHL. Dumo is in his third year of a six-year deal, which is good news going forward. The combo of him, Letang, and the young up and coming defense behind him should keep moving without any issues going forward.
If anything, this break may help Dumoulin get back to health. Before the break, he was looking sluggish and rusty, but this time off may be a godsend. We have to wait and see what happens next, but with him going nowhere, you can be sure he will be back in the top line of defense and flying ever so entirely under the radar.