NHL Draft Lottery Primer: Sens edition

Sunday, April 10, 2011 · 3 comments

All 14 non playoff teams are eligible to win the lottery. The winning team will jump up 4 places in the draft, subsequently dropping every team they pass 1 position.

Numbers are courtesy of http://www.nhlscap.com/draft.htm

The percentage chances winning the lottery:

Edmonton 25.0% (250 combinations)
Colorado 18.8% (188 combinations)
Florida 14.2% (142 combinations)
Islanders 10.7% (107 combinations)
Ottawa 8.1% (81 combinations)
Atlanta 6.2% (62 combinations)
Columbus 4.7% (47 combinations)
New Jersey 3.6% (36 combinations)
Boston 2.7% (27 combinations)
Minnesota 2.1% (21 combinations)
Colorado 1.5% (15 combinations)
Carolina 1.1% (11 combinations)
Calgary 0.8% (8 combinations)
Dallas 0.5% (5 combinations)

Only the bottom 5 teams have a chance at the first pick. Here's how it breaks down:

-Edmonton has a 48.2% chance of retaining the top pick and a 51.8% chance of slipping to #2

-Colorado has an 18.8% chance of jumping to #1, a 42% chance of staying put at #2 and a 39.2% chance of slipping to #3

-Florida has a 14.2% chance of jumping to #1, a 56.1% chance of staying put at #3 and a 29.7% chance of slipping to #4

-The Islanders have a 10.7% chance of jumping to #1, a 66.7% chance of staying put at #4 and a 22.6% chance of slipping to #5

-Ottawa has an 8.1% chance of jumping to #1, a 74.7% chance of staying put at #5 and a 17.2% chance of slipping to #6

Not including the "lockout lottery", where every team had an equal shot at Sidney Crosby, there have been 15 draft lotteries. The last place team has won the lottery just 6 of those 15 times. However, the last place club still retained the top pick on 2 other occasions, as the lottery winner came from outside the bottom 5:

-6 times the last place team has won the lottery, including 4 of the past 5 years
-4 3rd place teams have won it: WSH 2004(Ovechkin), FLA 2002(traded, CBJ - Nash), ATL 2001(Kovalchuk), TBL 1998(Lecavalier)
-1 4th place team has won it: FLA 2003(traded, PIT - Fleury)
-2 5th place teams have won it: CHI 2007(Kane), 2000 NYI(Dipietro)
-1 7th place team has won it: LAK 1995 (3rd pick - Berg)
-1 8th place team has won it: CHI 1999 (4th pick, traded, NYR - Brendl)


Here's a look at how a Sens fan should watch the lottery unfold:

If Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly starts the show by revealing the 5th pick belongs to Boston(via Toronto), feel free to kick in your TV, as history will have been made by the 22nd place team winning the lottery. The highest seeded team to ever win. Meaning, the Sens will have definitely slipped to 6th and the rest of the show has been ruined, as we will know the other teams will stay in their respective top four positions.

If it's revealed Ottawa has retained the 5th pick, then we know one of the teams 17-21 or 27-30 has won the lottery.

If it is revealed that the Islanders have secured the 5th pick, then it's gets fun for Sens fans, if only for a moment.

4th pick - if it's New Jersey, Ottawa picks 6th. If it's Florida, the game is still afoot
3rd Pick - if it's Columbus, Ottawa picks 6th. If it's Colorado, keep playing along.

From here, Bill Daly will jump ahead and reveal the top pick. If it's Ottawa, well, you know, Sens fans are happy. If it's Edmonton, that means Atlanta has won the lottery, jumping from 6th to 2nd. The Sens will pick 6th.

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Welcome to my Healthy Scratches blog. You can hear Jason York and myself weekdays from 3-6 on Team 1200. I use this blog to expand upon some of the things we talk about on the show, and anything else that really pops into my ample head.
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