As we await the beginning of the new NHL season, I’ll be previewing each of the players in the Minnesota Wild system who will be on the roster, or competing for a place this year. My subject for this edition is Matt Dumba.
The Wild selected Matt Dumba 7th overall in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, hoping he could help re-stock the team’s defensive prospect cupboard. He spent the first half of the year in the WHL, before joining the Wild for training camp after the lockout. He made the team out of camp and stuck around for a few games, but didn’t play. He went back to the WHL without having dressed for a game. He had a fairly ordinary season in junior and was one of the final cuts for the Candadian WJC roster.
-Here is Eliteprospects.com‘s take on him:
A quite spectacular defenseman that combines offensive skills and speed with a strong physical game. Has a cannon of a shot from the blue and puts up points on regular basis. Is an impressive open ice hitter and will be even better with additional muscle mass. Defensive play could use some fine tuning. Has leadership qualities.
-Here is some analysis from Hockey’s Future:
Dumba has the potential to be an electrifying player in the NHL, but he still needs to round his game into form before taking that next step. He is an energetic player who can score the big hit or the big goal, with his offensive game being more advanced than his defensive play. Dumba has good speed and uses it to rush the puck up the ice, and once in the offensive zone, he has a quick release and a good shot. His defensive game could use some work, but that may not be his ticket to the NHL, anyway.
Dumba had another good camp this year and was very impressive in preseason. He made the team once again, and is expected to pay some game this time, possibly getting a 9-game “cup of coffee” before being sent back to the WHL as he is too young for the AHL and the Wild won’t want to burn a year off his EL contract.
I would love to see him get a few games on the 3rd pairing alongside Keith Ballard, in place of Clayton Stoner. He plays a similar game to Ballard, with skill at both ends of the ice and great hitting ability. Dumba has was more upside though, and if he really shines in 9 games, I would like the team to keep him around for the year.
There isn’t a whole lot of analysis that can be done about Dumba at this point. I look forward to seeing him on the ice, hopefully sooner rather than later.
His Season Is A Success If…
His Season Is A Disappointment If…
….doesn’t play with the Wild, or disappoints when returned to juniors.
Okay, that’s it for “Dumba55″. Next, I’ll be taking a look at Mike Rupp and previewing his 2013/2014 campaign.
Hit me up on Twitter for more hockey views/analysis. Yelling at me is encouraged.
Previous articles in this series:
*Numbers in this article courtesy of: