Can Dillon Dube make the Flames Line up in the next few years?

BUFFALO, NY - JANUARY 4: Josef Korenar
BUFFALO, NY - JANUARY 4: Josef Korenar /

After an impressive World Junior Championship tournament for team Canada’s captain and Kelowna Rockets forward Dillon Dube the question is will he fit in the Calgary Flames line up?

The Calgary Flames 2016 2nd round pick may be not be big on the ice, weighing in at 183 lbs and 5’11” stature, but he plays a big game. This season with the Kelowna Rockets, he has 18 goals and 21 assists in 27 games while last season he put together 20 goals and 35 assists in 40 games. He will most likely finish this season having his best statistical season in his career.

Captain Canada

Before the World Junior Championship began, Dube was told he was going to be wearing the “C” for team Canada. He wore it with pride and led the team to a gold medal against Sweden on Jan. 5th.

Related Story: Flames prospects at WJC 2018 - Gold Medal

In his second World Junior tournament, he contributed in all aspects of the game, adding three goals, two assists, and five points in seven games. It was quite the improvement from his prior WJC tournament, scoring no goals and three assists in seven games, not to mention losing in the gold medal game to the United States in a shootout.

In a recent Q and A written by Wes Gilbertson of the Calgary Herald with Flames GM Brad Treliving, he was impressed by Dube.

"Going into it, he sort of played the role that we thought he would. I don’t know if you could say what line was first, second or third — it was a pretty deep lineup — but Dillon played with two top offensive guys. He played top power-play, penalty-kill … I thought he just touched a lot of the game, and I thought he was really good. – Brad Treliving"

Where could he fit in the lineup?

Now I’m not saying he will 100 per cent be playing for the Calgary Flames next season, but I do think there is a very good chance. Treliving and Burke may very well want to develop Dube in the AHL like they did with Mark Jankowski and Andrew Mangiapane but only time will tell. His size could hold him back in some ways but as we see with Johnny Gaudreau there are ways around that and you can use it to your advantage. He doesn’t play small, in the WJC he showed he can play a tough game throwing his body around and playing in the hard areas like in the corners and in front of the net. Most important of all he scored a big goal in the gold medal game against Sweden.

Dube is useful because he can be used at center or at left wing. The Flames have been without some forward depth due to injuries to Kris Versteeg and Michael Frolik, but luckily, Jankowski has brought the next man up mentality with him to the Flames.

If Dube has a good camp, he could move up the depth chart ahead of Curtis Lazar or if the Flames decide to move on from Matt Stajan.

Next: Flames looking to go on a run

In summary

I think it would be smart for Flames management to let him develop in Kelowna and then in Stockton for a year. Let Dube fill out more and get stronger, then bring him up to the Flames. With that being said, if he comes into camp next season and looks like he is NHL ready, he’s worth the gamble.