It is easy to see Jean Dupuy has come a long way in his two seasons with the Kingston Frontenacs.
Dupuy, who was a 13th-round draft selection in 2010 by the Frontenacs, has worked his way up to a higher ranking in the eyes of the NHL Central Scouting for June’s entry draft.
Unranked at the beginning of his sophomore Ontario Hockey League season, the six-foot-two, 190-pound Dupuy is considered a late-sixth-round NHL prospect now.
Teammate Ryan Kujawinski is ranked 69th by Central Scouting.
Dupuy, who is from Orleans, said he woke up to a call telling him he was on the Central Scouting list on Wednesday.
“I am pretty honoured but it is only the beginning. I have to keep going and try to climb up the ranking,” Dupuy, 18, said.
General manager Doug Gilmour said it was a credit to Dupuy’s hard work to be drawing NHL scouts’ attention.
“He kills some penalties for us. He can play third line, fourth line for us and doesn’t (complain),” said Gilmour, who was handling Thursday’s practice with head coach Todd Gill away for Thursday’s wake and Friday’s funeral for his mother, Anne Gill, who passed away Sunday.
“Jean works hard and sticks up for his teammates. That’s what you want to see with guys that are not selfish. He just goes out and plays. Whatever you ask, he does,” Gilmour said.
“Play my role first and foremost. If I can pop one in it’s great,” said Dupuy, who has three goals and six points in 34 games.
Physical play, more so than offence, is what the Frontenacs rely on from the big left winger. Obviously he has no objections to the role.
“Keep hitting, keep my gritty game going. It’s worked so far and I just have to improve on what I am doing,” Dupuy said.
A rule that is new to the league this season has put a bit of a squeeze on Dupuy’s style. He is closing in on the maximum number of fights a player is allowed — 10 — before suspension and fines to the team start kicking in.
Dupuy has actually had 10 scraps but any fights that occur when another player instigates the fight isn’t counted on the 10-fight limit.
“It is a new rule, which has snuck up pretty quick on him. But as long as he doesn’t instigate he will be fine,” Gilmour said.
“I still have two fights to go. I’m not too worried about it,” Dupuy maintained.
“I’m just going to keep trying to do stuff without (fighting) but if the time comes I won’t be scared to defend a teammate or jump-start the team.”
Belleville’s Carter Sandlak showed interest for tangling with Dupuy last Friday but neither player dropped the gloves. Dupuy, who has 67 penalty minutes, said he is more interested in helping the Frontenacs put last weekend’s 0-for-3 performance behind them.
Two of the teams on the list this weekend — Owen Sound on Friday night and the Guelph Storm on Sunday — decisively defeated Kingston last week.
“We have to come back like we’ve done all year pretty much and show (Owen Sound and Guelph) it was not as easy as they thought the first time,” Dupuy said.
“We keep those losses in our stomach.”
Gilmour said that with the team down some bodies — defenceman Mikko Vainonen sits out his third game of a 10-game league suspension for a check to the head — it is important for the team to play defensively sound.
“We have really got to make sure we stay a little more patient, rely on each other and take no dumb penalties,” Gilmour said.
“We have to believe in ourselves as well. We’ve got a great team here,” Dupuy said.
“We just have to make sure we believe in ourselves and the effort on the ice will come out by itself.”
article courtesy of The Whig-Standard