NHL Rumors: Teams already calling the Blue Jackets on Pierre-Luc Dubois after John Tortorella benched him

If Jarmo Kekalainen was hoping to handle Pierre-Luc Dubois’ trade request quietly, last night’s benching makes that almost impossible.

The Blue Jackets top center played a grand total of 3:55 of the first period and never saw another shift. John Tortorella is a simple coach. Give an effort and you play, don’t and you won’t.

A look at Dubois’ last shift clearly shows that he looked lost and disengaged.

John Tortorella benches Pierre-Luc Dubois

After the game, Torts made it clear that it wasn’t just Dubois that took a seat. However, no one took a seat as long as he did. “It’s up to the player to show me,” he said on the topic and obviously Dubois didn’t show enough.

I’ve coached Luc like this for a couple years, as far as trying to get some growth in his game, growth as a pro,” Tortorella said. “Nothing changes here. There’s more spotlight on it. I get that.”

“I get you guys have to ask me the questions, but I think you’re asking the wrong guy. I’m just a coach, trying to make it work with the hockey club, trying to find a way to win games. The person you keep asking me about, you should ask him.”

The Athletic

This has now taking center stage in Columbus and will overshadow everything the team does on the ice. If they were hoping it wouldn’t be a distraction, they couldn’t be more wrong.

Pierre Luc Dubois rumors
Pierre Luc-Dubois (USATSI)

NHL Rumors: Teams are calling again on Dubois

When word got out that Dubois was looking for a change, upwards to 20 teams called. Per TFP some of those were:

  • Montreal
  • Anaheim
  • New York Rangers
  • L.A.
  • Calgary
  • Vegas
  • Winnipeg

Now the chatter around the rumor mill is GM’s around the league already started calling last night.

Does what happened last night expedite a trade? It’s unlikely at the moment because it isn’t Kekalainen’s M.O.. However, if this keeps up any longer he may have no choice.

Unless he fires Torts. And don’t rule that out.