Jun 19, 2013, 8:03 AM EST
The Colorado Avalanche are still open to trading the first overall pick in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, but if they keep it, they probably won’t select highly regarded defenseman Seth Jones.
Unless what you’re about to read is all a big bluff.
“If we do pick first, we’re leaning more toward one of those three forwards,” Avalanche executive vice president of hockey operations Joe Sakic told The Denver Post.
Sakic is referring to centers Nathan MacKinnon and Alexander Barkov as well as winger Jonathan Drouin. Of those three, MacKinnon is typically the highest ranked prospect.
The Avalanche need a defenseman more than a forward (and especially a center), but Sakic intends to pick the player he regards as the best available regardless of the team’s short-term needs.
“We feel those three forwards are just too good to pass up,” Sakic said.
As for their defense, the Avalanche might attempt to bolster it through the trade or free agent markets. They are in a healthy position from a cap perspective, which could put them at an advantage this summer as other teams attempt to get under the ceiling.
- Report: Salary cap ‘may be around’ $70 million next season 16
- TGIF: Five NHL games to watch this weekend 4
- Report: Laviolette a candidate to replace Capuano 21
- Sharks say Fleury was ‘shaky’ and ‘fighting it’ in 44-save victory 53
- Boychuk boarded by Pacioretty, taken off on stretcher (Update: has movement in extremities) 57
- Seguin (concussion) cleared to play tonight 0
- Bylsma: Sharks are NHL’s best, ‘with all due respect to Chicago’ 89
- Will the Rangers use a compliance buyout on Richards? 10
- Malkin (lower body) to miss tonight’s game versus Sharks 20
- Flyers’ Couturier: ‘We’re starting to believe in ourselves’ 60
- Bylsma: Sharks are NHL’s best, ‘with all due respect to Chicago’ (89)
- Flyers’ Couturier: ‘We’re starting to believe in ourselves’ (60)
- Boychuk boarded by Pacioretty, taken off on stretcher (Update: has movement in extremities) (57)
- Lehtonen shines, Roussel agitates as Stars beat ‘Hawks (53)
- Sharks say Fleury was ‘shaky’ and ‘fighting it’ in 44-save victory (53)