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Are Blake Wheeler and Pierre-Luc Dubois On The Way Out Of Winnipeg?

A troubled regular season that saw the Winnipeg Jets miss the playoffs has given way to a potentially turbulent off-season, especially involving the futures of Dubois and Wheeler.
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A troubled regular season that saw the Winnipeg Jets miss the playoffs has given way to a potentially turbulent off-season. First came a report they were gauging captain Blake Wheeler's trade value, followed by another indicating Pierre-Luc Dubois could depart as an unrestricted free agent in 2024.

Daily Faceoff's Frank Seravalli cited sources saying the Jets have spoken with other clubs about Wheeler. The 35-year-old winger has two years remaining on his contract with an annual salary-cap hit of $8.25 million. His full no-movement clause reverts to a five-team trade list on July 1.

Dubois, meanwhile, is a restricted free agent on July 13 with arbitration rights. Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman reported the 23-year-old center Jets management of his intention to test the UFA market in two years time.

Seravalli suggested Wheeler's contract might not be difficult to move given his size, style of play and point-per-game production. Nevertheless, that cap hit for two more seasons could dampen his trade value with the salary cap rising by $1 million for 2022-23. His age could be another concern.

The Jets' rumored exploration of Wheeler's trade value could be tied to their efforts to sign Dubois to a long-term extension.

Acquired from the Columbus Blue Jackets last season, Dubois is completing a two-year deal with an annual average value of $5 million but earned $6.65 million in actual salary this season. Friedman reported the Jets intend to retain Dubois and hope to keep him around for a long time. To do that, however, could mean offering a significant raise.

Cap Friendly indicates the Jets have $18 million in cap space with 13 players under contract. They have room to re-sign Dubois but it could complicate efforts to bolster their depth for next season.

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