Jones, the team’s 24th overall selection in the 2016 NHL Draft, played just two games last season before suffering a torn chest muscle and missing practically the entire campaign. While this lower-body injury has nothing to do with that chest injury, Stephens notes the team is exercising extra caution with Jones, and rightfully so.
With a career-high of just 12 points and having never played more than 59 games in a season, Jones hasn’t exhibited the offensive potential you’d hope for out of a first-round pick. High-end scoring was never Jones’ appeal, though. Rather, his 6′ 3″, 216-pound frame and willingness for physicality made him an attractive prospect for the Ducks at the time.
If he can manage to stay healthy, Jones is again expected to contend for a role in the team’s bottom six. With some added offensive depth over the offseason, Jones could get a chance to have a breakout season with some better linemates.