Paging Pierre-Luc Dubois: The Blue Jackets Need You

By Chris Pennington on May 4, 2019 at 10:15 am
Pierre-Luc Dubois has five points in eight playoff games for the Blue Jackets, but his presence on the ice has been scarce.
Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

Pierre-Luc Dubois: Young phenom, gone missing.

Dubois is the youngest Columbus Blue Jacket ever to hit 100 points. Throughout the back half of this regular season and the entire playoffs, though - he's been a very low-impact player, to put it kindly.

Through his first 57 regular season games, Dubois had 51 points in 57 contests, only second to Cam Atkinson. He was on pace for a nearly 80 point season but started to skid a bit. In his final 25 games, Dubois recorded just ten points. 

Another way we can look at it is that through those 57 games to start the season, Dubois scored or assisted on 28% of all Blue Jacket goals. In every game since then, including playoffs, his contribution dropped down to 15%.

His playoffs, on paper, have looked decent. In eight playoff games so far this postseason, he's recorded five points. However, three of them came in Game 4 against the Tampa Bay Lightning, and one of them was a goal that ricocheted off his body and into the net in Game 1 against the Boston Bruins.

Aside from his points, Dubois has seemed to float through shifts and barely make an impact on the forecheck, getting the puck out of the defensive zone or creating scoring chances. 

He's sitting at a -3 rating, only one of five team members to have a negative rating. During this Bruins series specifically, he's tallied a CF% of 49.31 and SCF% 48.33.

Finally, in a rather frustrating night for the whole team during Game 4 against the Bruins, Dubois took an ill-timed holding penalty near the end of the contest and received a ten-minute misconduct as soon as he got out of the box.

So, right, we get it. Dubois hasn't been himself.

Regardless of what has caused it - the Blue Jackets desperately need Dubois to find his game again. In the current series with the Boston Bruins, Duchene and Artemi Panarin have combined for five of the eight goals for Columbus. They can't keep carrying that weight themselves.

There are certainly other secondary scorers that are needed to step up - but Dubois could be a primary scorer right now, and relied on one as such. His style of play, a bruising, skilled center, could be greatly utilized against a hard-nosed Bruins team.

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