Jones is a hockey player because of the Avalanche, competing against the sons of Colorado players while his father Popeye Jones was a member of the Denver Nuggets. His affinity for the franchise is well-known; that the Avalanche snagged the No. 1 pick in the 2013 NHL Draft lottery in the year Jones was eligible … well, the word “fate” is thrown around too often in this day and age, but yeah, that’s what it felt like.
But as fate would have it, Patrick Roy rejoined the Avalanche as both head coach and VP of hockey operations. Since that hiring, the No. 1 pick has been in play: Roy publicly saying that the Avalanche would be open to trading the pick, followed by executive vice president of hockey operations Joe Sakic saying that the Avs were leaning towards taking one of the top forward prospects rather than Jones.
Whether it’s all a smoke screen or not, Jones is paying attention.
“You go on NHL.com and you see those sorts of things, or on NHL Network. I don’t really try to relate it to myself,” said Jones on Monday, attending the Stanley Cup Final with other draft prospects.
Jones said he understands Roy being eager to help the team by potentially moving the pick.
“You can’t blame him. There are a lot of options. I don’t think a No. 1 pick has been traded since 10 years ago or something like that. The team’s looking to do the best thing for their organization and to win a championship,” he said.
Here's more from Jones:
Jones spoke to the media before Sakic indicated the Avalanche were “leaning more toward one of those three forwards” rather than the 18-year-old defenseman Jones, opting for Nathan MacKinnon, Jonathan Drouin or Alexander Barkov.
Is it a bluff? Perhaps. But it’s only added to the pressures Jones has faced through this process.
“I’m definitely enjoying this, but it’s been a hectic season media-wise and hockey-wise,” he said.
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