According to a report from the Denver Post, the Colorado Avalanche will pass on taking blue liner Seth Jones with the first overall pick in the draft later this month. The Portland Winterhawks defenseman was thought to be a good fit for the Avs because of their depth at the forward position, and lack thereof on the blue line.
It looks as though Joe Sakic and company, however, will take either Nathan MacKinnon or Jonathan Drouin instead with the top pick. According to the report, Aleksander Barkov hasn’t been ruled out by Colorado as well. MacKinnon makes a lot of sense based on the fact it’s tough to find a quality centre and the Avalanche could use another right-handed shot in their top six.
The interesting thing about this story is the fact that Colorado would let this information slip. Keeping it quiet could have potentially allowed them to make a trade and get something else in return, while still getting the player they coveted. For instance, let’s say the Florida Panthers who pick second overall, really want Jones. By showing your hand you don’t put any pressure on them to try to move up. If the Avs are content with MacKinnon, why not keep it a mystery and see what trade offers teams approach you with.