The NHL will hold it’s Draft Lottery Friday night with only seven out of 14 teams named. The crazy scenario is unlike anything the league and its teams have experienced which could see the New York Rangers land a high selection.
Friday night at the NHL Network studios in New Jersey the 14 possible teams will watch and see who lands the number one pick in the 2020 NHL Entry Draft. Unfortunately for everyone involved, this is much more complicated than in previous years.
The Draft Lottery is normally held between the 15 teams that did not make the playoffs, but because of the COVID-19 pandemic, only the seven teams not participating in the 24-team playoffs have been identified. The Ottawa Senators hold two selections in the draft based on a trade they made with the San Jose Sharks, so the draft lottery will be based on 15 chances between 14 teams.
The Draft Lottery will be between the Red Wings, Sharks, Kings, Devils, Ducks, Sabres, and Senators — as well as the eight teams who do not make it through the qualifying round of the modified playoffs.
A little confusing and that is the easy part.
The seven teams not participating in the playoffs are listed with the odds of landing the number one overall pick. Team’s A-H is the clubs that do not make it out of the qualifying rounds. The losing teams will fill out the remaining eight spots. Here comes the crazy part, thanks to Hailey Salvian of TheAthletic.com, here is a breakdown of how the format will go should a team between A-H get the winning lottery ball.
- This lottery might have two different phases, depending on how Phase 1 goes.
- The eight teams who lose their play-in series will be “placeholder” teams in the lottery represented as Team A, Team B, etc.
- Tonight the NHL is only drawing the top three spots.
- If all three draws are won by the bottom seven teams (Red Wings, Sharks, Kings, Devils, Ducks, Sabres, and Senators), there will be no Phase 2 lottery and those teams receive their selections.
- The remaining four teams in the bottom seven group are assigned draft positions No. 4 through No. 7 in the inverse order of their points percentages at the time of the pause in the regular season.
- The next eight positions (eight through 15) will be assigned to the eight teams that do not advance from the qualifying round, in inverse order of their points percentages at the time of the pause in the regular season.
- If any of the three draws are won by placeholder teams, a Phase 2 lottery will be necessary.
- Phase 2 will include all eight teams that do not advance from the qualifying round.
Those teams will have equal odds to draw for the lottery spot that was won in Phase 1.
For example, if the winning team of the first lottery draw is from the bottom seven group, that team wins the right to the first overall pick in the 2020 draft. If the winning team of the first lottery draw is a placeholder team, the right to the first overall pick will be determined in Phase 2.
Projected Numer 1
Alexis Lafreniere is the projected number one overall player in the NHL draft this year. The winger has dominated the QMJHL with the Rimouski Oceanic over the past three seasons, winning back-to-back CHL Player of the Year awards.
Last year the Rangers claimed the number two overall pick with Jeff Gorton selecting Kaapo Kakko. Will the Rangers create some magic once again this year. Fans will find out tonight, well maybe after the qualifying rounds. The organization will know more in late July, ok I’m not sure when they will know for sure, but perhaps we will know on Friday night that they won’t have a top-five selection.
The Draft Lottery can be seen at 8 p.m. on the NHL Network, NBSCN, Sportsnet.