Welcome to another WHL Best of the 2010s feature where we profile the best WHL players from the 2009-10 season all the way to the 2019-20 season. Players are judged based on what they did in each division. This means if a player spent time in multiple divisions, their placement will be judged based on what they did separately while in each division. Don’t forget to vote on our Twitter page, @WHLonA51 to help determine which player will be crowned the best WHL player of the 2010s. We hope you enjoy.
A leader on and off the ice, Matthew Dumba is exactly how teams should want their star defenceman to develop into. In 225 games, he recorded 151 points and was a major contributor to Team Canada during his WHL career. Overall, he sits second in Red Deer Rebels history in goals by a defenceman with 51 and eight in points.
In 2010-11, Dumba made the jump full-time to the WHL putting up an impressive 26 points in 62 games. For his efforts, he was named WHL Rookie of the Year becoming the third Rebel ever to win the award. While his first season was strong, it was nothing compared to his 2011-12 season.
In his second full season, Dumba would score 20 goals and register 57 points in 69 games. He also would captain Canada at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial tournament to Gold and a Bronze at the World U18s. At the U18s, he was named the tournament’s best defenceman after recording 12 points in just seven games. He also played in the Top Prospects game that season which led to him being drafted by the Wild in the first round of the 2012 NHL Draft.
2012-13 saw another strong season as Dumba finished with 42 points in 62 games. He once again got the chance to represent Canada, this time in the Canada Russia series playing in three games. This was his last season in Red Deer as he was dealt to Portland following the season’s conclusion.
After playing 13 games with the Wild in 2013-14, he was sent down to Portland to finish up his WHL career. During that time, he participated in the World Juniors for Canada and helped the Winterhawks within one game of a Memorial Cup berth. Overall, he had 24 points in 26 regular-season games along with 18 points in 21 playoff games.
Dumba’s career in the WHL was special. He is a born leader and that helped him become one of the best all-around defencemen the WHL has seen in the past two decades. The former Rebel is going to be hard to beat in this Best of the 2010s contest, that’s for sure.