Kyle Dubas
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Kyle Dubas throws one of his big free agent signings under the bus

Published April 19, 2024 at 3:55 PM

Kyle Dubas has a reputation of being a no nonsense General Manager, but also being someone who protects his players, that changed as he threw Ryan Graves under the bus.

When Kyle Dubas was general manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs, he developed a reputation of being a player first general manager. It always seemed like the young executive went to bat for his team and tried to deflect all blame off of his players where possible. After less than one year in Pittsburgh, it appears that he is completely changed that mindset.

After the Pittsburgh Penguins season came to an end, today, the team took part in end of season media availability today. Dubas made himself available for questions and was quite candid when discussing certain topics. Last summer the Penguins signed veteran defender Ryan Graves to a 6-year contract paying him 4.5 million a season.

Unfortunately, for the Penguins and graves, the defender had a disappointing season. In 70 games, he scored three goals and added 11 assists. This displayed a nearly 50% decrease in overall production. Today when Dubas spoke he completely threw the defender under the bus.

With Ryan, there's no dancing around it. He was a very good player in Colorado and New Jersey... He came in and from the beginning, I thought, 'it happens'. Did I expect it to go the whole year? No. Part of that is on us as an organization, but it's as much on Ryan to push and find his way through the summer. It's a massive summer for him. His strength, which will allow him to be more physical and make stops in the defensive zone, his mobility - he's going to have to push and really work on that. We have to arm him with the path to get there and he has to execute it relentlessly and if he can do that, he will get back to being the player he was when we signed him.

While some fans appreciated the candid honesty, others felt the need to point out that this is the type of player Graves has always been. Graves has always played sheltered defensive minutes while other members of the team shouldered a more difficult load. So to see a general manager throwing a player under the bus after that player produced. How they have throughout their entire career is surprising.

With 5 years remaining on his contract, Pittsburgh certainly hopes that Graves can somehow find a level of success he has never found before in his career. However, this is not a good look for their general manager.
April 19   |   142 answers
Kyle Dubas throws one of his big free agent signings under the bus

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