Pierre-Luc Dubois trade to Los Angeles Kings
(Photo Credit: @WPGJets/ Twitter)

In a major move announced Tuesday, the Los Angeles Kings have acquired forward Pierre-Luc Dubois from the Winnipeg Jets in a sign-and-trade deal. The Kings will part ways with forwards Alex Iafallo, Rasmus Kupari, and Gabriel Vilardi, along with a second-round draft pick in the 2024 NHL Draft, in exchange for Dubois.

The trade marks a significant shift in the Kings’ roster, as they secure a player who was long rumored to be on the move. Dubois, a 25-year-old center, has been a figure of interest for several weeks, with speculation linking him to both Los Angeles and the Montreal Canadiens. Despite Dubois’ expressed preference to play for Montreal, the Kings remained the frontrunners in the race to secure his services.

The trade comes after Dubois and his camp communicated to the Jets last year that he was not interested in signing a long-term deal with Winnipeg. His agent, Pat Brisson, suggested it would be best if Dubois was traded this summer, rather than negotiating a short-term agreement.

With this new arrangement, Dubois has agreed to an eight-year contract with the Kings, worth $8.5 million annually. This lucrative deal underscores the Kings’ commitment to strengthening their offense, as Dubois joins a talented line-up that includes Quinton Byfield, Kevin Fiala, Arthur Kaliyev, Anze Kopitar, and Adrian Kempe.

Dubois, selected third overall in the 2016 draft by the Columbus Blue Jackets, has demonstrated solid performance throughout his NHL career. After three and a half seasons with the Blue Jackets, where he amassed 159 points in 239 games, Dubois was traded to the Jets. Over two and a half seasons with the Jets, Dubois tallied 63 goals and 80 assists for 143 points. His performance in the 2022-23 season was the best of his career, notching 27 goals and 36 assists for 63 points in 73 games.

However, critics argue that Dubois has yet to fully live up to his draft status. This trade to the Kings, therefore, presents an exciting opportunity for a fresh start and the potential to reach new heights in the 2023-24 season and beyond​.

This acquisition comes at a crucial time for the Kings, who were eliminated in the first round of the 2023 Stanley Cup playoffs by the Edmonton Oilers. The addition of Dubois to their roster signals a strong intent to better contend for the Stanley Cup, something they haven’t done since their victory in 2014.