Pierre-Luc Dubois trade talks heat up

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Corey Abbott
·9 min read
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Columbus and Pierre-Luc Dubois appear to be set to part ways. The situation was escalated after Dubois was benched on Thursday night. Coach John Tortorella said afterward that Dubois’ play this season has “eroded” and the Blue Jackets forward admitted that he needs to play better.

However, it looks like Dubois could be playing for a new team the next time he takes to the ice. TSN’s Darren Dreger reported Friday night that the Blue Jackets are “closing in” on a trade that involves the 22-year-old center.

Dreger later added: "I’d be surprised if a deal isn’t done by the end of the weekend, perhaps as early as Saturday. Now, the indications are that the Winnipeg Jets are the frontrunner, but I have to make this clear that the trade, a deal is not done yet which promotes speculation that other teams are trying to stay in the mix. And that makes good sense. Why wouldn’t you if you’re Marc Bergevin of the Montreal Canadiens or Bob Murray of the Anaheim Ducks as an example? Now, if the deal gets done with Winnipeg, you have to believe that Patrik Laine would be included in that. Star for star. There’s some speculation that maybe Jack Roslovic, who doesn’t have a contract and isn’t with the Winnipeg Jets, could also be involved. But I stress. It is not done yet, but it could be resolved as early as Saturday,"

Aaron Portzline of The Athletic reported on Friday night that Dubois will be a healthy scratch for Saturday afternoon’s match against Tampa Bay if he is still a member of the Blue Jackets. If a deal is close then a decision like that would make a great deal of sense.

Dubois signed a two-year, $10 million contract with Columbus on Dec. 31 amid reports that he wanted to be traded. Tortorella confirmed those Dubois’ trade request prior to the beginning of the season and it looks like he could be getting his wish soon. Dubois led Columbus in scoring with 49 points (18 goals, 31 assists) in 70 games last season. He also topped the team with 10 points (four goals, six assists) in 10 postseason outings.


The Leafs bounced back from Wednesday’s 3-1 loss to the Oilers with a victory on Friday night despite playing without Auston Matthews (upper body) and Joe Thornton (rib fracture).

Leon Draisaitl opened the scoring with a shorthanded marker early in the first period, but the Leafs scored shortly later on the same power play when Adam Brooks got his first career NHL goal.

Jimmy Vesey’s second goal of the season gave Toronto a 2-1 lead going into the third period.

Connor McDavid ended a three-game goalless skid just 50 seconds into the final frame to even the score. He finished the match with a game-high seven shots on target.

John Tavares got his fourth power-play goal of the year to put the Leafs back ahead and that held up as the game winner.

Mitch Marner, who assisted on the Tavares winner, scored an empty-netter just before the buzzer.

William Nylander contributed two helpers in the match.

Zach Bogosian was credited a game-high seven blocks.

Mikko Koskinen stopped 25 of 28 shots to take the loss in his sixth straight start. Frederik Andersen turned aside 30 shots for the win.

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The Penguins stretched their win streak to three straight games on Friday night. All three matches were decided beyond regulation time, with two victories coming in shootouts and the other in overtime.

Bryan Rust got it going just past the midway point of the first period with his first goal of the season. He compiled a whopping 11 shots on target in the game.

The Rangers scored the next three goals with Filip Chytil (2), Adam Fox (1) and Kaapo Kakko (2) scoring in quick succession.

Phil Di Giuseppe earned two assists during that span. He also concluded the contest with five shots and a game-high eight hits.

Jared McCann got one back for the Penguins with a late power-play goal and Teddy Bluegar got the game-tying tally in the third period.

Igor Shesterkin made 26 saves in the defeat, while Tristan Jarry picked up a much-needed victory with 31 stops through regulation and overtime.


The Capitals halted a two-game winless skid on Friday despite not having Alex Ovechkin, Evgeny Kuznetsov, Dmitry Orlov and Ilya Samsonov due to COVID protocol. All three of Washington’s victories so far this season have come against Buffalo.

Eric Staal, Dylan Cozens and Riley Sheahan got their first goals as a member of the Sabres. For Cozens, it was his first career NHL marker.

Nicklas Backstrom and Jakub Vrana got their third goals of the year. Vrana also added an assist in the contest.

Nic Dowd scored his second marker of the 2020-21 campaign.

Rasmus Ristolainen and Garnet Hathaway co-led the match with five hits apiece.

Tom Wilson left the game with a lower-body injury.

Linus Ullmark stopped 29 of 32 shots in the loss, while Vitek Vanecek blocked 24 of 27 shots in the win.

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Chicago ended a four-game losing streak on Friday night and picked up their first win of the season.

Patrick Kane’s third of the season on a Blackhawks power play opened the scoring.

Calvin de Haan and Andrew Shaw (power play) got their first goals of the season to build a 3-0 lead for Chicago.

Dylan Larkin got the Red Wings on the board at the 12:22 mark of the third period with his third marker of the year.

Mattias Janmark sealed the win with a shorthanded empty-netter for his first goal with his new team.

Thomas Greiss stopped 24 of 27 shots in the defeat, while Kevin Lankinen defended 30 shots to register his first NHL victory.

Nikita Zadorov recorded game-highs in hits (6) and blocks (5) on Friday night.

Filip Zadina was added to the COVID protocol-related absence list prior to the contest. He joined Robby Fabbri, Sam Gagner, Adam Erne and Jon Merrill.


Minnesota won a second straight game on Friday night to run their record to 4-1-0 during what has been an exciting start to the season for the team.

Joel Eriksson Ek scored his third goal of the year to open the scoring. Jordan Greenway picked up the primary helper and scored into an empty net to seal the team’s win.

Matt Nieto had the only goal of the match for San Jose. He tied the game at 1-1 shortly after Eriksson Ek scored in the first period.

Zach Parise and Kevin Fiala (empty-netter) also scored their first goals of the campaign, while Nick Bjugstad earned his first point as a member of the Wild with an assist.

Cam Talbot stopped 11 of 12 shots in the first period, but exited due to an injury. Kaapo Kahkonen turned aside all 17 shots he faced over two periods of work in relief to pick up the win.

Devan Dubnyk surrendered two goals on 27 shots to get the loss in his return to Minnesota.

Minnesota will host the Sharks again on Sunday.


Dallas finally opened their 2020-21 season on Friday and exploded for seven goals following a sluggish first period. The Stars had a delayed start due to a COVID-19 outbreak, but only Blake Comeau was on the COVID protocol list for the contest.

Joe Pavelski generated two goals and two assists in the contest. Both of his goals and one assist came on the power play, which went 5-for-8 in the victory.

Alexander Radulov potted two goals and added one helper. He registered all three points during the second period when the Stars scored five times.

John Klingberg collected three assists in the opener, while Joel Kiviranta produced one goal and one helper.

Denis Gurianov and Esa Lindell had the other goals for Dallas in the match.

Anton Khudobin made 34 saves for the shutout.

Juuse Saros was pulled after he surrendered five goals on 20 shots. Pekka Rinne stopped six of eight shots in relief.

The only blemish on the night for the Stars was Jamie Benn leaving the game due to a lower-body injury.


The Coyotes snapped a four-game win streak for the Golden Knights on Friday night and avoided the possibility of a Vegas sweep in the process. The two teams will meet again on Sunday.

Christian Dvorak opened the scoring just 3:22 into the match on a Coyotes power play for his first goal of the year. He also added his fourth assist of the season on a goal by Derick Brassard during the second stanza.

Nick Schmaltz also finished the contest with one goal and one assist.

Conor Garland had one goal and two helpers in the victory.

Drake Caggiula chipped in two assists, while Jordan Oesterle (empty-netter, power play) had Arizona’s other goal.

Shea Theodore provided one goal and one assist in the loss, while Cody Glass also scored for Vegas in the loss.

Lawson Crouse had one assist and a game-high seven hits, while Brayden McNabb and Alec Martinez were credited with five blocks each.

Darcy Kuemper stopped 29 of 31 shots for his first win of the season, while Robin Lehner blocked 21 of 25 shots for his first defeat of 2020-21.


Colorado bounced back from a 4-2 loss to Los Angeles on Thursday with an overtime triumph over Anaheim to get back over .500 at 3-2-0.

Joonas Donskoi scored a power-play goal for the game’s icebreaker less than three minutes into the match. The two teams combined for 31 shots on goal in the first period.

Hampus Lindholm got his first goal of the season just 47 seconds into the second period.

Mikko Rantanen gave the Avalanche the lead in the third period with his fourth goal of the year. Bowen Byram got his first NHL point with an assist on the play.

Adam Henrique answered back for the Ducks shortly later with his first goal of 2020-21 and that forced the game into overtime.

Gabriel Landeskog provided the Avalanche with the game winner just 1:38 into the extra session with his third marker of the campaign. He also assisted on Rantanen’s goal and had six shots on target.

Philipp Grubauer, who got the night off on Thursday, blocked 36 of 38 shots in the win.

John Gibson stopped 29 shots in the loss.

OddsMoney LinePoint SpreadTotal Points
+110-1.5O 6
-129+1.5U 6