'Maybe a bit': World junior snub pushes Mooseheads' Dumais to record-setting season
In a season where he was cut from Canada's world junior team, forward Jordan Dumais reflected Saturday on what impact that had on his play with the Halifax Mooseheads.
"Not too much," he said after the team's final game of the season. "I mean, maybe a bit."
Dumais had a historic season with the Mooseheads.
He had four assists in Saturday's 10-5 win over the Charlottetown Islanders, bringing his season total to 140 points. He broke the previous franchise record of 137 established by Ramzi Abid during the 1999-2000 season.
Dumais finished second in the Canadian Hockey League in points this year, trailing only Connor Bedard of the Regina Pats, the surefire first pick in the upcoming NHL draft.
"I always have a chip on my shoulder," said Dumais. "That's just who I am."
Part of the reason for that chip are questions about his size — the team lists him as 5-9 and 174 pounds — and his speed.
He said he spent last off-season focusing on getting bigger and working on power skating drills to get faster, but he's used to the doubts.
"At the end of the day, I try to play my game and I try to have fun," said Dumais.
Mooseheads coach Sylvain Favreau said Dumais, who will turn 19 next month, has a promising career ahead of him.
"I think he's proven time and time again that he's a fast skater, can get there, win races and battles and I think that's how he's gonna have success later on," said Favreau.
Dumais was drafted by the Columbus Blue Jackets in the third round of the 2022 NHL draft.
Favreau said Dumais isn't just a scorer. He points to advanced analytics like takeaways, where Dumais is one of the best in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.
"The takeaways show you his determination away from the puck," said Favreau.
Alexandre Doucet often played on the same line with Dumais this year. He said Dumais is sneaky and creates opportunities for other players by having opponents focus on his play.
"He's a playmaker, said Doucet, who led the Mooseheads with 58 goals this year, topping Dumais by four. "He's got a good shot. He's a goal scorer, but I think his first mindset is to do a pass."
Doucet said Dumais is always laughing and making jokes off the ice.
"He's just enjoying the present moment," said Doucet. "He doesn't really care about, like, everything around him."
With the win Saturday, the Mooseheads finished the regular season in second place. Their season resumes Friday at home with Game 1 of the playoffs against the Cape Breton Eagles.
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