142

FlamesNation Top 20 Prospects 2018: #4 Dillon Dube

The Calgary Flames don’t have a rich history of drafting, especially after the first round, but recently they’ve made several high ceiling picks, including Dillon Dube in 2016. An unassuming, sub-6′ forward out of Kelowna in the WHL, Dube has quickly risen to the top of the Flames’ prospect depth chart after an impressive junior career, capped with a gold medal captaining Canada’s team at the World Junior Championship.

Last year, Dube was one of the last cuts at training camp and surprised many with his solid play alongside Tanner Glass and Ryan Lomberg in the preseason. With another successful WHL season under his belt and a handful of AHL games, this could be the year for Dube to push for a full time spot with the Flames. He jumps from #8 in last year’s rankings to #4 this year.

How did we get here?

All Dube has done throughout his hockey career is win. His trophy cabinet, conveniently located in his childhood home in Cochrane, holds a vast collection of awards and accolades.

He began his junior hockey career in 2013 when he was selected in the first round of the WHL bantam draft by the Kelowna Rockets. In his rookie year, he scored 27 points over 45 games, and 11 in 18 playoff games en route to a Memorial Cup championship. In his draft year, he upped his scoring to just over a point per game clip with 66 points in 65 games. This was good for 44th in WHL scoring , but his rapid scoring progression and solid two-way play for the Rockets prompted the Flames to draft him 56th overall in 2016.

At this point, Dube was a highly touted prospect and considered a potential steal for the Flames in the second round. Unfortunately, his 2016-17 season began with a lower body injury that kept him out for the first two months of the Rockets’ season. Still, he remained on Hockey Canada’s radar and was invited to Canada’s WJC camp. It surprised some that Dube was selected to represent Canada at the 2016 World Juniors, but despite playing a bottom six role on a very good Canadian team, he was an impactful player and won a silver medal in his first major international tournament. In the WHL, Dube was first on the team in points per game with 55 over 40 games.

Last year, Dube exploded for 84 points in 53 games for Kelowna, good for ninth overall in points per game. Internationally, Dube was again selected to represent Canada at the WJC, this time as captain. He guided Canada to a gold medal and was one of the team’s most dominant players throughout the tournament. After Kelowna was eliminated in the WHL playoffs by the Tri-City Americans and fellow Flames prospect Juuso Valimaki, Dube played six games for the Stockton Heat.

Dube finished his WHL career with 232 points in 203 games.

Stats, numbers, and everything therein

The 2017-18 season was Dube’s third full campaign in the WHL. He was second in scoring for the Rockets. He also played for Canada at the WJC on the international stage, as well as for Stockton at the end of the AHL season.

League Games played Goals Assists Points Shots
WHL 53 38 46 84 235
AHL 6 0 4 4 0

In his first taste of pro hockey, Dube was excellent in his six games for the Heat, albeit in a limited role. He adapted to the faster pace of the AHL at a time when the Heat were fighting for a spot in the Calder Cup playoffs and seemed comfortable playing against older, more experienced players.

For a deeper dive into Dube’s numbers, revisit Christian Tiberi’s writeup here.

Those in the know

Andy Eide, WHL beat writer 710 ESPN Seattle, is no stranger to watching Dube play:

Dube has always been a great two-way center and this year the offensive side of his game blew up. Despite only playing in 53 games with the Kelowna Rockets, he set career highs in goals (38), assists (46), and points (84). He manned the top line for the Rockets and was part of Canada’s gold medal-winning World Junior team this January. The season ended with him a plus-17 and he was solid at the dot, winning 54% of the faceoffs he took.

Larry Fisher, who covers the Rockets for the Kelowna Daily Courier and The Hockey Writers WHL, commented on Dube’s skillset:

Dube’s smooth skating remains his biggest strength, along with his hockey sense, but his shot — both in terms of accuracy and release — is also becoming NHL calibre. He’s going to be a solid pro for Calgary thanks to his versatility as a 200-foot player and his ability to play up and down the depth chart, on any of the four lines as either a centre or a winger.

If there is a knock on Dube coming out of junior, it’s that he can be a bit too individualistic at times and needs to better utilize his teammates, but that should be a natural progression in the AHL and/or the NHL.

On the horizon

The 2018-19 season should be the most exciting in Dube’s career to date. He was only drafted two years ago, but has a legitimate shot at making the NHL. With the Flames buying out Troy Brouwer and not retaining Matt Stajan, there is a spot open for Dube in Calgary’s bottom six. He was impressive in training camp last year and if he can take another step forward, he might force Brad Treliving to keep him around a bit longer this year.

That being said, he’ll be competing with players like Andrew Mangiapane, Austin Czarnik, and Spencer Foo for that NHL job, so he does have his work cut out for him. With Dube’s work ethic and commitment to getting better each year, it is very possible that he edges out these players and at least earns himself his NHL debut.

More likely, however, is that Dube spends the 2018-19 campaign in the AHL with Stockton. He might get a few games in the NHL via call-ups but the Flames probably want him to hone his skills in the minors and become comfortable with the professional game. Dube doesn’t require waivers so the Flames likely stash him in the AHL unless he absolutely knocks down the door.

Dube might not be penciled into the NHL roster just yet, but he sure looks like he has the tools to be a solid contributor at the highest level. He is very much in control of his own destiny and his name is definitely one to watch out for in training camp and the preseason.


#20 – Martin Pospisil #19 – Demetrios Koumontzis
#18 – Emilio Pettersen #17 – Filip Sveningsson
#16 – Milos Roman #15 – Dmitry Zavgorodniy
#14 – D’Artagnan Joly #13 – Adam Ruzicka
#12 – Linus Lindstrom #11 – Glenn Gawdin
#10 – Morgan Klimchuk #9 – Jon Gillies
#8 – Tyler Parsons #7 – Matthew Phillips
#6 – Spencer Foo #5 – Oliver Kylington

 



  • Stockton's Finest

    I saw him play a few games last year. He is not allergic to the front of the net. He spent time at RW and not center. Put him on the top line with Mangiapane and centered by Gawdin or Quine.

    Per Capfriendly, Stockton bound players listed as center include Dube, Gawdin, Phillips, Pollock, Quine, Graovac, and McMurtry (AHL contract). Others are listed as dual, but everyone knows Mangiapane, Foo, and Lomberg are on the wing.

    This roster is stacking up nicely. Hoping to see beyond the first round of Calder Cup playoffs in Stockton. A nice long run would be really nice.

    I knows these are interchangeable, but based on names and comments from others on this forum, Stockton’s line combos could look something like this:

    Mangiapane – Quine – Dube
    Klimchuk – Gawdin – Ehliz
    Rychel – Phillips – Peluso
    Lomberg – McMurtry – Robinson

    (This assumes Foo in Calgary)

    • Baalzamon

      This is why the Peluso signing is so puzzling. Because you forgot Graovac in your lineup, and he’s pretty much a guarantee to be Stockton’s 3rd or maybe 2nd C.

      Mangiapane – Quine – Dube
      Klimchuk – Gawdin – Ehliz
      Rychel – Graovac – Phillips
      Lomberg – McMurtry – Robinson

      No chance of Peluso taking out Robinson, so where does he fit?

      • Stockton's Finest

        There are others like Pollock and Zach Fischer who are not on this list either. So who is paired with whom is going to be fun. Rotating 3rd and 4th line players???

        • everton fc

          What’s the roster limit down there, ST? One could see maybe McMurtry in the ECHL. Maybe Fischer… But I’d be surprised if Pollock’s demoted. You are certainly going to have some fun watching the farm team this year!

          • Stockton's Finest

            Roster does not have a limit. Last year we had somewhere between 26 and 32. Made for some good autograph sessions between periods.
            Can’t see McMurtry in the ECHL, as he was pretty good for the Heat last year and inked a one-year AHL deal. He may not get as much ice time as he did last year though.

      • Getpucksdeep

        I still think if you’re developing kids and there’s no room on the 4 lines then don’t put in the 13 and 14 popcorn slots. Put players there who’s development isn’t important. We may well see goofy things like Peluso and Doaust as those practice spares. Not saying it will happen but I wouldn’ want prospects Dube or Foo or Andersson in those spare slots myself.

        • Burnward

          I’m actually really intrigued to see what he brings. Huge, scored goals, Johnny’s old linemate. I’m thinking he could be vaaarrrrrrryyyyyyy interesting.

    • freethe flames

      At development camp Dube centered Phillips and they looked very good together; so who knows what BT is thinking. I’m still trying to convince my better half that we should go to your neck of the woods in mid-February(teachers convention/family day long weekend) but I need more ammunition than seeing a Heat hockey game to convince. Where should we fly into and what should we see? What is the weather like at that time of the year? Those kind of things.

      • Stockton's Finest

        Sacramento is closer but maybe more options for San Francisco. And do you need any other excuse besides Heat hockey????

        San Francisco is about 90 minutes away and always good for a day. Old Sacramento is pretty good for a day. Some good wineries around Lodi and Stockton can easily take a day.

        Weather is mid 50’s (10 C) and can be rainy.

        The Heat have a Sat/Sun set against Colorado the 16th and 17th. They have a Sunday game on the 24th versus San Jose.

        I will be doing a post on this, but Mrs. Finest and I just booked our plane tickets and hotel for Calgary. The 7th of February against SJ and then a trip to see them in Vancouver on the 9th. Still need to get our game tickets and working with some people to secure them. More to come once game duckets are in hand…..

          • Stockton's Finest

            Thanks! I like being able to provide first hand reports to the fans, and something you may not read in a game report. Looking forward to this new season. Drop the damn puck already!!!! ?????

        • freethe flames

          Thanks SF; would you rather fly into San Fran or Sacramento. Thanks for the info; my wife is not a sports fan and my teenage daughter will do whatever. They both like history so I will keep working on them. What about staying in Stockton? Not only are a great fan and a great writer but now I’m making you into a travel agent.

          • Stockton's Finest

            I like Sacramento, as it is smaller and easier to get around. In fact when I come up to Calgary in February, I am flying Air Canada from Sac through Vancouver.

            Staying in Stockton? Better to stay in Sac. The drive down is about an hour but better options there. Old Sacramento has some good history tours. If you go to SF, there is always Fisherman’s Wharf and Pier 39. There are some good small towns in Calavaras County. Again, some pretty good wineries in the area.

    • Albertabeef

      My best guess is Phillips and Dube are two thirds of Stockton’s top scoring line. Phillips has mostly played the wing here in Victoria the past few seasons as there is more room for him on the big team there. The team was so weak on RW before it was his best shot. I’d leave Dube to center and then Mange or Gawdin on left. Insert them as #2 line in Calgary for 2019-20 unlikely but possible.

  • Off the wall

    If anyone from Vancouver Island would like to take in a game together in Duncan Saturday October 6 @ 6:00pm please let me know.
    I’ll coordinate the place to watch the game together. If you have suggestions, please let me know.
    You can email me —[email protected] com

    I don’t want to tie up this blog..
    Sound fair?

    Make sure you use your username on FN, otherwise I won’t know who the heck you are!

    Cheers!

  • Korcan

    Dube reminds me so much of Brayden Point. I don’t think he will have the same ceiling as Point, but they play a very similar game. IMO Dube is going to be a very important piece in the Flames’ future.

  • The GREAT WW

    I see our friends on ON are drooling of the possibility of trading for EK….
    Funny, but even though BT may actually be able to pull a trade like that off, I wouldn’t want him.

    The Oilers would need to start with Drisaddle and keep adding; Calder McCouldn’twin plus Drisaddle plus EK would take up over $30 in cap space;.not sustainable…..

    I really hope the Oilers land EK!!!!

    WW

  • The Beej

    Can someone explain this to me please:

    Pronman ranks our Prospect depth at 29th or whatever. We have one of the lowest prospect rankings in a long time… from many sources. Seems to be a bit of a consnsus.

    Yet I cant remember a time when we have had so many interesting prospects coming up and starting to knock on the door. Dube Foo Kylington Anderson Valimaki Phillips Gibson Parsons….Mangiapane…

    And yet we rank low.

    Is it because of a lack of high end picks or perceived high ceiling potential?

    If Tkachuk didnt make the NHL straight away he would be considered a high end prospect.

    And maybe we dont have a Hobey baker winner (but we have Phillips… what he doesnt have ceiling?)

    When have we ever had a big 3 at D like we have now?

    I honestly cant remember a time when we have had legit prospects in such high numbers.

    And yet we rank bottom of the league?

    I dont get it.

    • The Real SlimBrodie

      Who is Gibson? Or are you saying Parsons is our version of Gibson? Just read that hanifin signing is very close. Treliving said they are very lucky to have hanifin.

    • Neddd

      @The Beej
      “I honestly cant remember a time when we have had legit prospects in such high numbers.
      And yet we rank bottom of the league?
      I dont get it.”

      Just spit balling here but maybe its because this site and local media are overrating the Flames’ prospects…..

      • Still no edit button?

        Or it could also be that the Edmonton fan pronman underrated the flames prospects. Other “experts” have flames top ten. I guess time will tell

      • LannyMac

        Thanks Nedd this sight overrates all players. That’s alright it is flames nation after all. The problem is though they are up in arms when there inflated expectations aren’t met.

    • Skylardog

      I think many on here are overvaluing many of our prospects. Dube is the only forward I believe is capable of pushing out Lazar, Hath, or Czarnik (and I don’t think Czarnik is an NHLer). Anderrson and Valimaki are going to be NHLers, but after that, we are not deep in players that can come in and make an impact. The only other one I see as being capable is Klimchuk, but I don’t think he is going to get the chance he needs to prove he is capable. He is not an impact guy but a solid bottom six at best.

      Foo may work out, but I believe he is a fringe NHLer (I hope I am wrong). His usefulness if he can’t score a bunch is limited, and I don’t believe he is going to score a bunch. He will prove to be a marginal 2 way player (in my opinion). That just doesn’t translate to success in the NHL.

      Dube should play a bunch of games here once the injury bug hits, and we will be hard pressed to send him back.

      • Getpucksdeep

        When viewed as a whole to be sure we and every other teams fans over value a lot of prospects. Does not mean we don’t have a couple of Blue Chippers though. We do. Realistically Valimaki, Andersson, Dube and Foo are Blue chip and Kjillington, Mangiapane and Philips are guys that with a little more seasoning could get there. Your comments about Foo can be applied to every player trying to crack the line up. Just my opinion, like every one else’s, Dube and Foo are 2 guys who could be this years Jankowski in camp.

      • LannyMac

        S dog very well put. And for giving IMO a very honest assessment of flames prospects this year your comment is receiving trashes. Many posters on FN have there heads so far up there arses they wouldn’t even know what fresh air smells like. Do you people also live in a fantasy world outside of FN.

      • freethe flames

        Every fan base overvalues their prospects. However it is easy to under value players as well. Personally I think Mangiapane will be an NHLer; his game reminds me of Byron and his path to being a solid two way forward will continue to evolve. Dube has a higher ceiling for sure.

      • Kevin R

        SkyDog, not sure how you can say Klimchuk is a rated NHL prospect & Czarnik isnt? Why was it that 24 GM’s were after Czarnik? Quite frankly, there would be a pretty good chance that if Klimchuk was waived, he would potentially clear waivers. He sure as heck wouldnt have gotten a 1 way contract from any of the other 30 NHL teams.

        As for the drop in ranking, its all about the shiny new toys/picks in recent drafts. Flames have traded several 2nd rounders & this current years first & 3rd as well. Personally, if you have top prospects getting added to your stable each year it means your team sucks consistently. I think it’s only natural to bounce up & down in those rankings.
        If we didnt have Tkachuk 20, Bennett 22, Gaudreau 24, Monahan23, Hanifin 21, Lindholm 23, Janko 23 & Im not even touching on Valamaki & Andersson on the backend that are NHL ready, I would be very very concerned about the 29th ranking from Pronhead. Right now, I couldnt care less. This team is past the rebuild, it’s about building chemistry & structure for these players to become consistent winners. Goaltending is really my only concern.

    • The Fall

      Thing is: all young players are better today than 10 years ago, Period.

      Flames have either missed their first round picks (via trade) or graduated them instantly (Sean, Matt, Sam). So, in essence, Flames have no top flight prospects when compared to other teams who have recent first round picks sitting waiting to turn pro. These rankings are all projections, and everyone is using basically the same metrics, so any other team with a couple top 10 picks from the last two drafts who have yet to turn pro (coughs, Vancouver), are by most metrics, deeper than the Flames in prospects…

      • The Fall

        Flames may be ‘weak’ in prospect depth, but they are relatively strong in young talent (25 and under) within the system as a whole. So, while they are no longer ‘re-building or stocking the cupboards.; one would hope they are now an ’emerging’ team whose window is opening and should be pretty good for the next 5-8 years. Which is good timing in the Pac Div because ANA and LAK are kinda on the back side of that curve.

  • RedMile

    This guy is going to be good. Hopefully he gets a year in the AHL, don’t need to make the same mistake we made with Bennett, even if Dube isn’t as highly of a touted prospect as Bennett. Watching him at the world juniors showed he is an absolute horse on all 200 feet

  • Getpucksdeep

    Haines just posted his annual top 20 prospect list on 80 feet. Funny its not exactly same the as this one. His are in a different order?!? Does this mean prospects rankings aren’t carved in stone? They may be subjective?!? BTW Go Stamps!

    • freethe flames

      The FN is about guys who are eligible for the Calder, while Haines are about who he thinks are best prospects 25 and under who are not yet NHLer’s; MatchSticks and Gasolone did another one as well; so yes they are subjective based upon the criteria the writers use and their own personal bias.
      Despite being in a slightly different order his top 6 are more or less the same guys as here. He has Parsons higher.