Colorado Avalanche Mock Draft for All 7 Rounds


The Colorado Avalanche will be looking to replenish their prospect pool with their six picks at the 2016 NHL draft. They’ll start with the #10 pick in the first round.

Barring any trades, the Colorado Avalanche have six picks in the 2016 NHL draft. They have each of their own picks except for in the fourth round — they traded that selection to the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for Shawn Matthias.

Colorado has the opportunity to select six players in this year’s draft, starting with the first round’s #10. The first round, of course, is the most important as the team has the chance to choose an impact player. Second rounders can eventually make an impact, too — they often just take a little longer to develop. Late round players are often fuel for the AHL with hopes they can be useful if ever called up.

I imagine teams keep their draft lists pretty private, though it’s relatively easy to get an inkling of what they want. For example, in a recent interview with the Denver Post, GM Joe Sakic remarked that his list was “forward-heavy” this year.

What’s more, we can see what kind of player the Colorado Avalanche prizes. They like players who are big and speedy. They prefer good character/locker room guys. Colorado wants players with two-way abilities and a strong work ethic. The Avs also value grit.

So, in making my selections for the six players I think the Avalanche are going to choose in the 2016 NHL draft, I kept all those considerations in mind. I think I’ll have the first two rounds pretty well, but later rounds are always tough to predict.

103. Brown is the whole package — and it’s a big one. His height (6-foot-6) gives him the stride to be fast while his overall size makes him a mountain on the puck. Brown is a hard worker with elite puck and stick skills.. Center. Windsor Spitfires. Logan Brown. 10. player

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If Brown is gone by #10 — and he’s predicted to go as high as #6 — the Colorado Avalanche will probably select right wing Julien Gauthier. Gauthier has the size (6-foot-4, 225 pounds) and work ethic the Colorado Avalanche prize. He’s a speedy, explosive power forward.

More about possible first-round selections:

Related Story: 5 Players Likely on the 1st Round List

Center/Right Wing. University of Connecticut. Tage Thompson. 40. player. 103. Thompson is another player in the Logan Brown mold — big, speedy and skilled. He’s a year older than most prospects because of a late birthday, so he projects more poise and maturity.

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If Tage Thompson goes before #40, the Colorado Avalanche will probably select defenseman Markus Niemelainen. The Finn is another sizeable player (6-foot-5, 189 pounds) with good puck movement. He’s especially known for his booming shot.

Read more about possible second round selections:

Related Story: 6 Second rounders for the Avs

Cederholm is a big, aggressive shutdown defenseman. He has decent stick skills and great leadership qualities.. Defenseman. HV71 J20, SuperElit (Sweden). Jacob Cederholm. 71. player. 103

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As a second option to Jacob Cederholm, the Colorado Avalanche could select Jack Kopacka, especially if they chose a defenseman in the second round. Kopacka is a left wing with a solid work ethic that he takes to the corners and front of the net.

Read more about possible third round selections:

Related Story: Possible 3rd Rounders for the Avs

Shawinigan Cataractes. Gabriel Sylvestre. 131. player. 103. Sylvestre is a good-sized defenseman who’s very scrappy but also has keen puck-moving skills. He doesn’t put up a lot of points, but he’s a solid player on the ice.. Defenseman

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An alternative to Gabriel Sylvestre is right wing Matt Luff out of the OHL Bulldogs. The 6-foot-2, 183-pound forward moves well with good poise. He needs to bulk up to use his strength at the next level, but he puts up good points at major juniors (57 in 61 games).

103. Patrick Bajkov is a moderate-sized winger with excellent passing and ice vision. He has good discipline and works the corners.. Wing. Everett Silvertips. Patrick Bajkov. 161. player

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An alternative is Russian center Igor Shyvyryov. Also moderate in size, Shyvyryov has the puck skills and skating typical of Russian-trained hockey players. He has the ability to put up big points, but he needs development.

Austin Osmanski. 191. player. 103. Austin Osmanski is an America-born defenseman with great size (6-foot-4, 194 pounds) and good shut-down abilities. He plays with intelligence and good ice vision.. Defenseman. Mississauga Steelheads

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If by some miracle the Sandis Ozolinsh of forwards — Rodrigo Abols — is still available in the late rounds, the Colorado Avalanche should snap him up. The towering center — 6-foot-5, 185 pounds — is already 20 and unranked. He has good strength and excellent work ethic. He’s gritty and agile and loves to win his battles. The Colorado Avalanche should consider selecting Abols any time after the second round.

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The goalie class isn’t great this year. However, I looked at two goalie prospects — Evan Fitzpatrick and Filip Gustavsson — for the second and third rounds respectively. Of the two, I’d prefer to see the Avalanche take Gustavsson in the third round — or later, if he’s still available.

At the 2016 NHL draft, I predict the Colorado Avalanche will continue to build to their vision. Not every player will be a big, gritty, speedy, two-way leader. However, when choosing between players, they will likely apply that metric.

Overall, I think the Colorado Avalanche are going to select a maximum of two defensemen because the team is fairly well stocked for now. They’re certain to be at least 6-foot-2. At later rounds they might choose right-hand shots, but any defensemen from the second or third rounds are bound to be lefties.

I kept dancing around choosing small, explosive forwards (such as Tyson Jost) for this draft. However, the Colorado Avalanche already have Matt Duchene and eschewed Joey Hishon. Colorado wants their forwards to be at least 6-foot — believe in that model or not, but that’s what the Avalanche prefers.

Of the players Colorado selects, they’ll probably sign their first rounder to an entry-level contract by rookie camp, but even GM Joe Sakic doubts this player will make the team the first year. Other prospects chosen… it really depends. If they manage a steal — such as Tage Thompson or Rodrigo Abols — they will want to secure his rights. Later round players will probably have to prove their mettle — or threaten to return to Russia, as Sergei Boikov did.

Next: Sakic on Free Agency and Trading for D

All in all, barring a trade, it’s unlikely what the Colorado Avalanche do at the 2016 NHL draft will have a big impact on the 2016-17 season. However, they will be helping secure the future of their franchise.