The Colorado Avalanche won the first overall pick in this year’s NHL Draft Lottery on Monday, and it’s looking as though that team will have a good, long look at taking Seth Jones with the No. 1 selection.
“This gives us a chance to improve our club and add to a strong group of young players,” said the Avalanche’s director of amateur scouting Rick Pracey.
“(Jones) is interesting, unique to our market. … Clearly he’s a name that we’re discussing, and we look forward to sitting down with him and getting to know him better.”
Jones, a defenseman for the Portland Winterhawks in the Western Hockey League and the top-ranked prospect by NHL’s Central Scouting Bureau heading into the draft, also has family ties to Denver.
His father, Popeye Jones, played for the Denver Nuggets in the NBA.
For the Avalanche, Monday’s lottery win is big news for the franchise, which finished last in the Western Conference standings.
“Clearly, given the talent we have on this team right now, we’re adding another elite prospect to the solid foundation that we have,” Avalanche general manager Greg Sherman told NHL.com.
“It is certainly a big day for the franchise; it’s a big night for our fans and we’re very excited about the outcome tonight.”
Following his stunning 41-game suspension, it looks like Raffi Torres has at least one former teammate in his corner.
We haven’t yet seen how the San Jose Sharks or the NHLPA are reacting to the league’s hammer-dropping decision to punish Torres for his Torres-like hit on Jakob Silfverberg, but Jason Demers decided to put in a good word for Torres tonight.
It was a simple message: “#FreeTorres.”
Demers, now of the Dallas Stars, was once with Torres and the Sharks. (In case this post’s main image didn’t make that clear enough already.)
Perhaps this will become “a thing” at some point.
So far, it seems like it’s instead “a thing (that people are making fun of).”
… You get the idea.
The bottom line is that there are some who either a) blindly support Torres because they’re Sharks fans or b) simply think that the punishment was excessive.
The most important statement came from the Department of Player Safety, though.
Those who feel as though the Boston Bruins may rebound – John Tortorella, maybe? – likely rest some of their optimism on the back of a healthy Zdeno Chara.
It’s possible that he’s merely limping into what may otherwise be a healthy 2015-16 season, but it’s definitely looking like a slow start thanks to a lower-body injury.
The latest sign of a bumpy beginning came on Monday, as several onlookers (including CSNNE.com’s Joe Haggerty) pointed out that Chara was listed on injured reserve.
As Haggerty notes, that move is retroactive to Sept. 24, so his status really just opens up options for the Bruins.
Still … it’s a little unsettling, isn’t it?
The Bruins likely realize that they need to transition away from their generational behemoth, but last season provided a stark suggestion that may not be ready yet. Trading Dougie Hamilton and losing Dennis Seidenberg to injury only make them more dependent on the towering 38-year-old.
This isn’t really something to panic about, yet it might leave a few extra seats open on the Bruins’ bandwagon.