It’s not easy playing center in the NHL. The amount of responsibility on the plate of someone playing down the middle in the best league in the world is enormous, and not everyone can handle it. That’s why you see so many players who were drafted as centers end up on the wing when they take that next step. Ross Colton is one of those players who was a center at a younger age, but has spent most of his time in the NHL at wing. The Colorado Avalanche targeted him with the belief that he could transition back to the position he played when he was drafted.
A little over halfway through the year, they’re very happy with his progress.
“He’s getting better,” Jared Bednar said of Colton. “I think it was a lot for him early in the year in exhibition, but he went to work.”
Acquired over the summer for a second round pick from the Tampa Bay Lightning, Colton has essentially become the de-facto second line center of the Avalanche. He’s on pace to set a career high in points, and his ice-time has been trending up. Colton has been paired with fellow off-season acquisition Miles Wood pretty much every night, and when joined by Logan O’Connor, they’ve been dominant as a trio.
No, that’s not an exaggeration.