Still not clear who will go No. 1 in NHL draft on Sunday

Neither Nathan MacKinnon nor Seth Jones say they know which of them will be picked first in the NHL entry draft on Sunday.

Avs may take Nathan MacKinnon over top-rated Seth Jones

Seth Jones is the top-rated North American skater for Sunday's NHL entry draft, but it's not likely the Colorado Avalanche will make him the No. 1 pick. (Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Nathan MacKinnon and Seth Jones say they are both in the dark about whose name will be called first in Sunday's NHL draft.

But the Colorado Avalanche are telling anyone who will listen that they are leaning towards MacKinnon, a forward, with their first overall pick.

Nothing against Jones, a defenceman who is the top-ranked North American skater. But Avs chief scout Rick Pracey says their research shows that picking an elite forward at the top of the draft pays dividends.

Pracey notes that four of the top five scorers this season were No. 1 overall picks in the draft (Steven Stamkos, Alex Ovechkin, Sidney Crosby and Patrick Kane).

And over the last five years, some 48 to 50 per cent of the top 20 scorers were selected in the top five of the draft.

So the Avs say they are selecting offence.