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Past Fantasy Outlooks
A blood clot in his lung limited Dupuis to just 16 games in 2014-15 -- his second straight campaign abbreviated by injury, as he suffered a torn ACL the season before. Despite the scary injury and his advanced age -- he's 36 now -- Dupuis isn't yet ready to hang the skates up; thus, he'll return to a third-line role with the Penguins this year, having been cleared to work out and take contact over the summer. While there should be minimal concern regarding a recurrence of blood clots, Dupuis's age and bottom-six role will most likely conspire to limit his fantasy utility.
Most 35-year-olds whose greatest asset is speed suffer a decline in play over time, let alone when they’re coming off season-ending knee surgery. Dupuis will attempt such a comeback under those circumstances in 2014-15. He is probably best suited for third-line play, but his ability to skate with Sidney Crosby has pushed him into a first-line role for the past several seasons. Dupuis got off to a strong start last year with nine points in 10 games, but he managed just 11 points in his next 29 contests before getting hurt. Fantasy owners will want to note that he rarely sees time on the man-advantage -- Dupuis has totaled only four power-play points since the 2006-07 season. There's a chance the right winger returns to the 50-point mark, as he's shown he can produce even without Crosby, but fantasy owners might not want to be too aggressive pursuing Dupuis because of his age and recent injury past.
Indispensible, that's what Pascal Dupuis has become for the Penguins. With 38 points (20G, 18A) and an NHL-leading plus-31 rating in 48 contests, Dupuis has continued to age like fine wine. He's shown he doesn't need to play alongside Sidney Crosby and Chris Kunitz to produce over the last couple seasons, but it doesn't hurt. Duper served as a top penalty killer for Pittsburgh, averaging nearly two minutes (1:55 TOI) short-handed. While his power-play time is negligible -- he scored two power-play markers -- Dupuis figures to reach the 20-goal level once again in 2013-14.
Despite shuffling from line to line and collecting a combined 34 minutes of power-play time for the entire season, Dupuis registered career highs across the board with 25 goals, 34 assists and 59 points. "Super Duper," who took 31 more shots than in any of his previous 10 NHL campaigns, never scored more than 20 goals prior to 2011-12. Look for that total to regress back to his average of 15-to-20 goals. He may be ranked higher in pools because of his career season but it would be unwise to bank on those numbers once again.
The Penguins retained the versatile Dupuis with a two-year, $3 million deal in the offseason. Few players wear the number of hats Dupuis does, serving as a Sidney Crosby linemate, a third or fourth liner, and as a member of a top-ranked penalty kill. From a fantasy perspective, Dupuis offers little upside but picks up consistent points. In fact, since coming over in a 2007-08 deadline deal with Marian Hossa, he's scored 12, 18, and 17 goals. His point totals of 38 and 37 give fantasy owners a glimpse at what they might expect from the 31-year-old speedster. As with many veteran NHL players, Dupuis likely means more to his teammates than he does to fantasy poolies.
Dupuis is probably more valuable to his actual team than he is to fantasy teams. He played in all situations on all lines last year and produced 18 goals and 38 points. Unfortunately, that’s likely his ceiling as his grit and determination can only make up so much for a poor scoring touch. Dupuis’ slick skating makes him a nice fit next to Crosby, but the Pens need more offense than what Dupuis offers.
Dupuis is fast and has a rocket shot that occasionally finds the net. Plus, he could play on a line with Evgeni Malkin and Ruslan Fedotenko while Max Talbot recovers from a shoulder injury for the first two months of the season. That's the good news. The bad news is that Dupuis isn't very talented. He's crafted a nice living based on his speed, but 12 goals and 28 points in 71 games last year shows that he doesn't carry much fantasy weight.
Dupuis played on a line with Sidney Crosby and Marian Hossa during the stretch drive, collecting 12 points in 16 games. As much as his speed excites fantasy owners, he has average skills and will likely be prone to slumps over the course of a long season. Dupuis represents the type of fantasy pump-and-dump micro stock that gets Wall Street brokers fired. Play Dupuis while he’s hot but don’t fall in love with him.
Dupuis plays the game with tremendous energy and has shown a scoring touch in the past (20 goals in 2002-03 with the Wild). He hasn't shown the consistency to make him a true scoring threat but is going into camp with a good chance to win a job on the second line -- alongside Ilya Kovalchuk. There is still offensive potential here and if he clicks with Kovalchuk he could improve his totals to the 40-50 point range.
After scoring 48 points in 2002-03, he hasn't broken 30 points the last two seasons amid a second consecutive injury-prone season (shoulder, ankle, groin). While he has great speed, he hasn't shown the ability to stay healthy.
Dupuis was one of the Wild's young players who failed to break out in 2003-04 but shouldn't be overlooked. Dupuis struggled with an ankle injury and posted just 26 points in 59 games. However, he had scored 20 goals and 28 points in 2002-03 and should rebound.