Duper Down

Penguins start season with Dupuis injured

Breanna Leasure

Pascal Dupuis, a right wing for the Pittsburgh Penguins hockey team, has been a favorite player of many Pittsburgh fans and the other team players. Last season Dupuis, or ‘Duper’ suffered a blood clot in his lung. Even though it was caught before it could do any damage, Dupuis had to stop playing hockey, only playing 16 of the 84 games in the 2014-2015 season.
Then, due to a torn ACL, he only played 55 games in the last two seasons, including the season where he was diagnosed with the clot.
Due to the blood clot, Dupuis had to take medicine that thinned his blood, and it made him susceptible to bleeding easily, making any possible injury even more dangerous.
At the age of 35, the clot forced him to make a decision that had the potential to change his life: Did he want to continue playing hockey? Hockey players’ careers usually last through the players’ 40s. He had the choice to focus on his career or his family. He chose that he was not done with hockey, and didn’t want to leave due to an injury.
He was cleared to play in the 2015-2016 season, and Dupuis’s fans cheered. His teammates were glad to have him back, and in the summer he was able to practice and play.
On October 5, 2015, it was announced that he wouldn’t play in the season opener against the Dallas Stars because of a lower-body injury.
The injury occurred during practice while he was doing a drill with Nick Bonino and Daniel Sprong. It was estimated that he would be out for four to five weeks while recovering.
If it’s correctly estimated, Dupuis won’t be playing in the first 11 games of the season.
Speaking of this season, on Thursday Oct. 8, at 8:30 p.m. the Penguins played in Texas against the Dallas Stars. Although the Penguins fought long and hard for all 80 minutes of the game, the Stars won.
The Stars had gotten a goal each period of the game, putting them in the lead, 3-0. Mattias Janmark, Ales Hemsky and Jamie Benn scored the goals for the Stars, earning them the win.
The Penguins made 37 shots at the goal while the Stars only had 24, but they proved that even though they had fewer shots, they made the most of them. The Penguins also had more penalties for hooking, holding and high-sticking.
Although Dupuis didn’t play in the season opener, both Kevin Porter and Olli Maatta were both recalled from the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton team of the American Hockey League. They played in the game on Oct. 8, and for Olli, this was a big deal. This was the first regular season game he had played since Dec. 6; he had been out due to medical injuries, including surgery for a cancerous tumor, and a shoulder injury.
The Penguins lost the games on Oct. 10 and 13, against the Arizona Coyotes and Montreal Canadiens. They did make up for the losses by winning the next two games against the Ottawa Senators and the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Also, on Oct. 18 it was announced that Dupuis had joined practice. This is a huge improvement from being told that he wouldn’t be on the ice for 5-6 weeks. It’s been only two weeks since the lower-body injury occurred. He has already joined practice, and the fans and his teammates hope his health improves quickly, so he will be allowed to play soon.