The Colorado Avalanche were true to their word at the 2013 NHL Draft, selecting Nathan MacKinnon of the Halifax Mooseheads first overall.
The Avalanche had said they preferred MacKinnon to Portland Winterhawks defenceman Seth Jones in the days leading up to the draft.
The Avalanche, who the NHL's Draft lottery to leapfrog Florida for the first pick, said they like Jones, but felt the team's need was greater at forward.
MacKinnon helped lead the Mooseheads to a Memorial Cup title this past season, leading the tournament with 13 points, scoring seven goals including a hat trick in the championship game, and was chosen as tournament MVP. He also scored 32 goals and 75 points during the regular season for Halifax.
"I kind of blacked out for a second, but it's so cool," MacKinnon said after being chosen. "They have such a promising team and such good young talent, and hopefully I can be a part of that...
"This is unbelievable, I'm part of the Colorado Avalanche and I can't wait to get to training camp."
Jones, the top-ranked prospect by NHL Central Scouting, surprisingly ended up slipping to fourth overall where he was taken by the Nashville Predators.
"Yeah, well I'm competitive, I have a competitive nature. And I get that from my parents," Jones said when asked whether he would be motivated by the slide. "You definitely want to prove them wrong. You definitely want to show them why they should have picked you. That's not my only goal next year but it's definitely on my list."
The Predators meanwhile were clearly delighted to have Jones fall to them with the fourth pick.
"This a franchise-type player," Predators GM David Poile, said of the six-foot-four, 205-pound defenceman. "So I really feel good about our defence right now."
Jones will join one of the NHL's top defencemen in Shea Weber on the Predators blue line.
The Florida Panthers surprised with the second overall pick, taking Finnish prospect Aleksander Barkov ahead of both Jones and Mooseheads forward Jonathan Drouin.
The Tampa Bay Lightning selected Drouin third overall.
"I think it's a good fit. They've got a young prospect, great old players, too, that are experienced, and I think it's the best fit for me," said Drouin.
The Carolina Hurricanes who were rumoured to be entertaining a number of offers for the fifth pick opted to hang on to their selection and select Swedish centre prospect Elias Lindholm.
The Calgary Flames were the first Canadian team to pick in the draft and they used the sixth overall pick on Ottawa 67's centre Sean Monahan. The Flames also selected Gatineau Olympiques left winger Emile Poirier 22nd overall and Regina Pats forward Morgan Klimchuk with the 28th pick.
The Edmonton Oilers followed the Monahan pick by selecting Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds defenceman Darnell Nurse.
The Vancouver Canucks made a big splash in the first round, moving into the top-10 by sending goaltender Cory Schneider to the Devils in exchange for the ninth overall pick. They used the selection on London Knights centre Bo Horvat. The Canucks also selected forward Hunter Shinkaruk of the Medicine Hat Tigers with the 24th pick.
The Winnipeg Jets, selecting 13th overall, chose Josh Morrissey of the Prince Albert Raiders.
The Ottawa Senators meanwhile selected Edmonton Oil Kings centre Curtis Lazar 17th overall. Lazar scored 38 goals and 23 assists last season, helping the Oil Kings finish first in the Western Hockey League's Eastern Conference
The Toronto Maple Leafs used their first round selection, 21st overall, on 6-foot-4, 217 pound Rimouski centre Frederik Gauthier.
The Montreal Canadiens, last Canadian team to pick in the first round at 25th overall chose 6-foot-5 American forward Mike McCarron.
The Buffalo Sabres made Rasmus Ristolainen the second Finnish prospect selected in the draft at eighth overall. The Sabres also held 16th pick which they used to select Nikita Zadorov.
The Dallas Stars rounded out the top 10 by selecting Russian prospect Valeri Nichushkin. The Stars also held the 29th pick which they used on versatile forward Jason Dickinson.
The Philadelphia Flyers chose defenceman Sam Morin of the Rimouski Oceanic 11th.
Max Domi, the son of former NHLer Tie Domi, was selected 12th overall by the Phoenix Coyotes.
The Columbus Blue Jackets used their first of three first round selections on Swedish centre Alex Wennberg at 14th overall. The followed that pick with Kerby Rychel at 19 and Marko Dano 27th overall.
The New York Islanders selected Brandon Wheat Kings defenceman Ryan Pulock 15th overall.
San Jose traded up to the 18th selection sending the 20th and 58th overall picks to Detroit. The Sharks selected defenceman Marco Mueller of the Everett Silvertips.
Detroit used the 20th pick on Anthony Mantha from Val D'or, the only 50-goal scorer in the CHL this season past season.
Washington selected Swedish prospect Andre Burakovsky 23rd overall. Anaheim chose Seattle defenceman Shea Theodore 26th overall.
The Stanley Cup Champion Chicago Blackhawks rounded out the first round by selecting Plymouth Whalers winger Ryan Hartman 30th overall.