After registering just one goal in 25 games to start the season, Minnesota Wild defenseman Matt Dumba has finally found his scoring touch.
Dumba led all NHL defensemen in goals last month, notching six goals and four assists in 13 games, beating out the likes of P.K. Subban and Brent Burns in December.
|Zach Werenski||Blue Jackets||10||4||1||5||36||11.1|
|Seth Jones||Blue Jackets||14||4||7||11||42||9.5|
He carried the team completely at one point, accounting for all three of the Wild’s goals in back-to-back meetings with the Edmonton Oilers and Chicago Blackhawks in mid-December.
Dumba’s shooting percentage was a wicked (and unsustainable) 23.1 percent in December and stands at 10.8 percent on the season. Couple that with low volume — Dumba has shot the puck just 65 times in 39 games, 60th in the league amongst defensemen — and he could be in the midst of a career year, especially if he starts to shoot a bit more.
Dumba is on pace for a career-high 44 points and 15 goals following his December outburst, which tracks with the 23-year-old’s development through parts of five seasons in the NHL.
Those numbers would put Dumba in the hunt for the franchise scoring record for defensemen, a list he’s been climbing since scoring 10 goals during the 2015-16 season. Burns has the single-season franchise record after scoring 17 goals during the 2010-11 season, his last with the Wild. Burns had had nearly-identical numbers as Dumba at this point in his fifth season: eight goals and 14 assists in 39 games.