The NHL Draft Lottery is finally upon us, and we have everything you need to know to get ready for tonight!
The 2018 Draft will be held at the American Airlines Center in Dallas this year on June 22nd and 23rd, and the lottery drawing tonight will set the order for the draft picks for all of the non-playoff teams.
In 2014, the NHL changed the draft lottery rules, allowing for any non-playoff team to have the chance at winning one of the top three picks in the draft. To prevent intentional tanking of a season, those teams that collect the highest number of points after being officially eliminated from the playoffs receive slightly better odds of winning (thanks can be sent to the Buffalo Sabres for this one).
The three teams that win the lottery will pick 1-2-3 in the draft order, and the remaining 12 teams will be assigned picks 4 to 15 based on the order of regular season points, with those teams earning the least points picking higher than those that earned more this year. Picks 16 to 27 will be determined after the second round of the playoffs, with picks 28 to 31 going to the last four teams left in the playoffs in an order that will be determined at a later date (generally based on who is eliminated first and who the last team standing is).
We're hosting the 2018 #NHLDraft and we'll know what pick we have tomorrow night at the NHL Draft Lottery. The Stars will end up with either the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 13th, 14th, or 15th pick. pic.twitter.com/sJBpoNqkJq— Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) April 27, 2018
The 2018 Draft lottery odds are as follows:
Buffalo Sabres - 18.5%
Ottawa Senators - 13.5% (*The Senators have the option to retain their pick and send the Colorado Avalanche their first-round pick in the 2019 NHL Draft.)
Arizona Coyotes - 11.5%
Montreal Canadiens - 9.5%
Detroit Red Wings - 8.5%
Vancouver Canucks - 7.5%
Chicago Blackhawks - 6.5%
New York Rangers - 6.0%
Edmonton Oilers - 5.0%
New York Islanders - 3.5%
Carolina Hurricanes - 3.0%
New York Islanders (from CGY) - 2.5%
Dallas Stars - 2.0%
St. Louis Blues - 1.5% (*If St. Louis’ pick is in the top 10, the Blues have the option to retain their pick and instead send the Philadelphia Flyers their first-round pick in the 2019 NHL Draft. If not, Philadelphia will receive St. Louis’ first-round pick in this year’s draft.)
Florida Panthers - 1.0%
Tune in tonight at 6:30 p.m CST as picks 4 to 15 will be announced during the 2018 NHL Draft Lottery Show on NBC. The top three selections will be revealed during the second intermission of Game 2 of the Western Conference second round between the Vegas Golden Knights and San Jose Sharks at 7 p.m. CST on NBC.
The Stars could pick anywhere between 13 and 15, depending on whether the Blues or Panthers win one of the top three picks. Last year, the Stars won the draft lottery, picking Miro Heiskanen as the third overall prospect in the draft.
Could lightning strike again? It would be a fairytale written just for the Stars if they were to win the first overall pick and be able to draft consensus #1 pick, and NHL-ready defenseman, Rasmus Dahlin in front of their own fans.
It’d be a very rare win for a team that could use some these days.