Avalanche director of amateur scouting Alan Hepple said Monday that the team could trade the No. 4 overall pick for multiple picks if it does not select “the best available player” at that position at the first round of the NHL draft Friday in Chicago.

Colorado, which finished with a league-low 48 points last season, is in a roster rebuild but an elite young defensemen is at the top of the needs list. Problem is, the draft’s highest-rated defensemen don’t appear worthy of the No. 4 overall pick. Right-shooting Cale Makar of Canada is the top North American defenseman but is rated ninth among North American prospects. Finland’s Miro Heiskanen, a lefty, is the top European defenseman, but No. 4 overall among his peers.

The Avs, who have selected just two defensemen in the first round of the draft’s past 10 years, might trade down to select Makar or Miro Heiskanan — or even home-grown product Cal Foote of Englewood, who is No. 3 among North American defensemen and projected to go between picks 10 and 15.

“There’s always a chance of trading back,” Hepple said. “We would have to see what we’re given, what’s presented to us, and we’ll take it from …read more

Source:: The Denver Post – Sports

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