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Avalanche Draft-Review

Posted 4:54 AM ET | Comments 1
The Avalanche went into the draft holding six picks and ended up making seven selections. The 61st pick overall was added by trading forward Brad Richardson to Los Angeles. Richardson was drafted in 2003, 163rd overall, with the draft pick Colorado got in the trade that sent Scott Parker to San Jose. So in the end, Parker turned out to be a 2nd round pick. However, it would be too difficult to break down the trade that sent Scott Parker back to Colorado because there were some more trades and picks involved, including Mickey Renaud who passed away last February.

Looking at every selection individually made by Colorado:

#50 Cameron Gaunce, Defense, 6-0 / 203, St. Michael's OHL, NAS 91
Was expected to go in the 3rd round. Colorado was impressed by his leadership skills. Has good offensive skills and could be a top-four defenseman.

#61 Peter Delmas, Goal, 6-2 / 169, Lewiston QMJHL, NAG 3
The Avs had strong interest in him at the Scouting Combine. Delmas thought he would go as the 50th overall but he had to wait a little longer. Didn't get a lot of ice time in Lewiston because Kings prospect Jonathan Bernier was the team's starter. The might be the reason why he dropped a little in the draft. Has the potential to be a franchise goalie.

#110 Kelsey Tessier, Center, 5-9 / 168, Quebec QMJHL, NAS 46
Known as a solid two-way player and aggressive forechecker. Scored more points than Angelo Esposito. His favourite team is Colorado and his favourite player Joe Sakic. You can put a question mark behind his size but it's up to him to prove all the scouts (that passed him) wrong.

#140 Mark Olver, Center, 5-10 / 155, Northern Michigan CCHA, NAS 207
The first pick that didn't come out of the CHL. Didn't get drafted in two previous drafts. Because he is a little older than the other draftees it's probably easier to evaluate how he will develop. Played solid last year scoring 38 points in 39 games. If he can continue producing like that he could be a steal but he's definitely a long shot.

#167 Joel Chouinard, Defense, 6-1 / 186, Victoriaville QMJHL, NAS 99
Is a very good friend of former Avs player and current Lake Erie assistant coach Sylvain Lefebvre's son. Compares his style of play to Bruno Gervais.

#170 Jonas Holos, Defense, 6-0 / 205, Sparta Sarpsborg (Norway), knot ranked
Played at the World Championships in Quebec and Halifax quarterbacking Norway's powerplay. Is already 21 years old and like Olver, the scouts have an easier job estimating his career potential. Will play for Farjestad of the Swedish Elite League next year which will definitely help him to develop into a better defenseman.

#200 Nathan Condon, Center, 6-0 / 180, Wausau West, High-WI, NAS 78
The Avs got Gaunce a little earlier than most people thought so they "compensated" that by drafting Condon in the 7th round. Is a strong playmaker and will attend University of Minnesota. That might have influenced the Avs' decision to draft him since there have been some more Avs prospects in that system (Stoa, Peltier, Carman).

Overall it was a little bit surprising how this draft went for the Avs. In recent years the scouts had a strong focus on College players. This year it was the complete opposite drafting four out of seven players out of the CHL. The tallest player drafted by Colorado is a goalie so you can definitely question size of this year's draft class. What's also remarkable is the fact that all of those players are offensive and creative players. Colorado didn't draft power forwards, grinders or shutdown defensemen.
Three or four years from now we will be able to see if this was the right decision going with smalled and skilled players instead of some bigger assets.

If you want to put all draftees on your desktop, feel free to download this wallpaper:

NAS: North American Skater (Final Ranking)
NAG: North American Goaltender (Final Ranking)
Filed Under:   Colorado   Avalanche   Draft-Review  
June 25, 2008 11:13 AM ET | Delete
I don't think the lack of power forwards or grinders is at all surprising. The reason the Avs brass gave for parting ways with Q was their differing philosophies. Q wanted a defensive-oriented system, the Avs want a team that will fly up and down the ice and score a million goals- think Buffalo Sabres a couple seasons ago.
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