With the playoffs now under way, the teams who missed out on this years’ playoff run are thrown into a lottery to see who will get the first overall pick, which, this year, is Swedish defenseman Rasmus Dahlin. The Buffalo Sabres finished dead last this year, so they had an 18.5% chance of winning the lottery, but right behind them was the Ottawa Senators with a 13.5% chance, and behind them was the Arizona Coyotes with an 11.5% chance, so things were very tight.
During the intermission between game 2 of the San Jose Sharks and the Vegas Golden Knights, the lottery was officially underway and the results were in. Starting from bottom to top (no. 15) the list would be as follows:
15.) Florida Panthers; 14.) Philadelphia Flyers; 13.) Dallas Stars; 12.) New York Islanders; 11.) New York Islanders (again); 10.) Edmonton Oilers; 9.) New York Rangers; 8.) Chicago Blackhawks; 7.) Vancouver Canucks; 6.) Detroit Red Wings; 5.) Arizona Coyotes; 4.) Ottawa Senators
So, two teams moved up from their original spot, but who would take the first overall? Buffalo was still the only team who started out originally in the top 3 before the draft, but then the 2nd intermission came and the final results came in.
3.) Montreal Canadiens; 2.) Carolina Hurricanes; and 1.) Buffalo Sabres
The Sabres, having the best odds, have officially won the draft lottery and will more than likely select Rasmus Dahlin, but there is some more rumors coming out of Buffalo. It has been rumored that the Sabres are thinking about trading current NHL defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen to the Edmonton Oilers for their 10th overall pick or possibly another young asset such as Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (who’s name has been in the trade talks all season long) or Ryan Strome. It is just a rumor though.
Now it is time to see who will most likely select who in the draft:
Clearly, the Sabres wouldn’t pass up on Dahlin, so that’ll be Buffalo’s selection. Carolina has a few to choose from, but they will most likely select Andrei Svechnikov and the Monteral Canadiens will most likely select Filip Zadina. Ottawa would select Evan Bouchard.
The Arizona Coyotes will most likely keep their 5th overall pick, but will history repeat itself? There are so many interesting things about who the Coyotes would select with the 5th overall pick, who just so happens to be Brady Tkachuk, son of past captain Keith Tkachuk or as Coyotes fans call him Captain Coyote Keith Tkachuk. Some notable 5th round picks in the past have been Brayden Schenn (2009), Luke Schenn (2008), Karl Alzner (2007), Phil Kessel (2006), Carey Price (2005), and Thomas Vanek (2003); some of the hottest names in the entire NHL, could the Coyotes draft a player that will join this list?
Another possibility with the pick is the Coyotes would trade it for a top scoring player. The Coyotes need some offensive fire power added to their arsenal, and the 5th overall pick plus a player/prospect could make this deal look enticing, i.e. Derek Stepan and Antti Raanta were acquired via a trade with a young prospect and the 7th overall pick from the New York Rangers at last year’s draft, so it is a possibility, but the Coyotes will most likely keep this pick.
The rest of the draft possibilities is a coin flip as the top players begin to look similar as you go down the list.
The draft will officially commence in Dallas, Texas on June 22nd-23rd.
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