Winnipeg Jets forward Pierre-Luc Dubois says the off-season rumours of him wanting a trade out of Manitoba are just that — rumours.
Dubois, 24, who came to the Jets in a blockbuster 2021 trade for star Patrik Laine, spoke to media Monday for the first time since rampant speculation, fuelled in part by the public statements made by his agent Pat Brisson, that he was Montreal-bound.
Brisson said last week that Dubois, who is from Quebec and grew up as a Canadiens fan, would like to play in Montreal someday.
Dubois was also spotted attending the 2022 NHL Entry Draft in Montreal earlier this month, adding fuel to the fire. He said Monday, however, that everything has been blown out of proportion.
Pierre-Luc Dubois speaks LIVE with the media ⤵️ https://t.co/kGsTFYtIui
— Winnipeg Jets (@NHLJets) July 25, 2022
“You hear stuff that I wanted out of Winnipeg — if I wanted out, I would have asked for a trade. I didn’t ask for a trade.”
“I read some things — it’s funny, it’s frustrating sometimes to read them. I saw a thing that I went to the draft thinking I would get traded. I went to the draft because I live 15 minutes from the arena and I’m a fan of hockey. … I used to go to drafts when I was a kid.”
Dubois, who signed a one-year, $6-million qualifying offer from the Jets on Friday, said he was invited to the draft by his bank as a guest, and didn’t realize, at the time, the way that his appearance and his agent’s comments were being interpreted.
“I think people took a little thing and blew it up times 20,” he said.
“Everybody can read into it what they want. … I just thought it was overblown, the reaction, and that people just ran with the two seconds that they liked or didn’t like to hear.
“I thought that the best thing was to do the one-year deal, the qualifying offer. Now that’s taken care of, my contract is signed, I’m ready to go for the season. Next summer is next summer. For now, I don’t have to think about this anymore.”
Dubois said he’s looking forward to meeting with the Jets’ new coaching staff and getting together with his teammates in hopes of reversing last year’s “disappointing” season.
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