Colorado Avalanche: 5 Predictions for 2015-16

3 of 6

Jun 26, 2015; Sunrise, FL, USA; Mikko Rantanen poses with team executives after being selected as the number ten overall pick to the Colorado Avalanche in the first round of the 2015 NHL Draft at BB&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Mikko Rantanen Will Play 40 NHL Games

If Soderberg moves down to the third line, who will move up to the second-line right wing? Well, how about this young man?

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Mikko Rantanen may need some time to adjust to being away from home, and to the American style of hockey. Some European players need longer to adjust, others don’t need that long. Rantanen will at least have a maturity and size advantage over his fellow rookies, having played three professional seasons in Finland’s top league.

The best way for him to adjust would be to have him start the season in the American league. From there, he can be one of the first call-up options for the Colorado Avalanche. Who knows, maybe he will be called up right when Roy decides to move MacKinnon to center, giving Rantanen the chance to skate on the second line with fellow Scandinavian Landeskog and MacKinnon.

Even if not, I believe that Rantanen will get a big shot as early as next season. He may not play his 40 games — or more — on the second line, but he will play them somewhere.

Next: Avs Prediction #3