Jones ahead of MacKinnon on Button's October draft ranking Staff

10/17/2012 1:47:17 PM

The first edition of Craig's List for the NHL Draft's class of 2013 kicks off with a big blueliner at the top of the order.

TSN Scout Craig Button's monthly ranking released on Wednesday has Portland Winterhawks defenceman Seth Jones leading the pack over Halifax Mooseheads forward Nathan MacKinnon, followed by European blue-chipper Aleksander Barkov.

Jones and MacKinnon are expected to go neck and neck for the No. 1 overall selection next summer.

"When it comes to Seth Jones, I ask myself not what he can do, but what can't he do?" explained Button. "He's as unique a defenceman as I have seen since Chris Pronger and as complete a 'package' as I have seen in quite some time.

"Outstanding size, athletic ability, skill and intelligence. Combine all of that with a high competitive level and Seth is able to impact the game in any way, shape or form. It doesn't matter the situation, he can make a positive difference in so many ways, either with his skill or his physical capability or with his intelligence and as an opponent it is quite the challenge to gain an advantage versus him."

Button added another notable factor in going with the son of former NBA player Popeye Jones first.

"A player who has the capability to play 25-30 minutes a game, important minutes against the very best players - they don't come along very often," he said.

Included in the Top 5 are forward Valeri Nichushkin of Cheljabinsk 2 (MHL - Russia) and Brynas centre Elias Lindholm.

The sixth-ranked player on Craig's List is Ottawa 67's forward Sean Monahan, followed by blueliners Nikita Zadorov (London - OHL), Josh Morrissey (Prince Albert - WHL) and Ryan Pulock (Brandon - WHL).

Rounding out the Top 10 is centre Curtis Lazar of the Edmonton Oil Kings.

Click here at ( for the full October prospect list.