The NHL playoffs are heating up, but not every franchise is focused on the here and now. Sixteen teams instead have their eyes on the future.
On Wednesday, the NHL held its draft lottery to determine which club would snag the No. 1 overall pick in the 2021 NHL Draft. As the cards were flipped by deputy commissioner Bill Daly, everything was following the odds — until No. 3 was turned over. The Ducks, who had the second-best odds for the top spot, were bumped down, leaving the Sabres and the NHL’s newest franchise, the Kraken, left.
In the end, it was the Sabres who landed atop the draft board. General manager Kevyn Adams will have not have an easy decision to make, as there is no consensus No. 1 overall prospect this year. Defenseman Owen Power seems to be the most likely choice, but there is also his University of Michigan teammates Matthew Beniers and Kent Johnson. Other big names include Dylan Guenther, Brandt Clark and the third Hughes brother, Luke.
Buffalo last held the No. 1 overall pick in 2018 and selected defenseman Rasmus Dahlin.
NHL Draft lottery results 2021
Here is the complete 2021 NHL Draft order following the June 2 draft lottery drawing.
The remaining 16 slots (Nos. 16-31) will be determined by the results of the 2021 Stanley Cup playoffs with the champion tentatively scheduled to pick 31st.
How many draws were there?
This year’s draft lottery had two draws:
The Kraken were given the same odds as the third-worst team in the 2021 season, which is similar to the odds the Golden Knights received when they entered the league in 2017. Vegas ended up picking sixth overall and selecting Cody Glass. Seattle could not have selected lower than fifth in 2021.
When is the 2021 NHL Draft?
The 2021 NHL Draft is scheduled for July 23-24 with the Round 1 on Friday and Rounds 2-7 on Saturday. Similar to last year, it is scheduled to be a virtual event.
Why do the Coyotes not have a first-round pick?
The Coyotes had to forfeit their first-round pick in 2021 after violating NHL rules regarding the draft combine by conducting physical testing on 2019 draft-eligible players prior to the combine. Commissioner Gary Bettman ruled that the Coyotes had to forfeit their second-round pick (49th overall) in 2020 and their first-rounder in 2021.
If the Coyotes had been selected in either lottery draw, there would have been a redraw. Arizona will now select in the 11th spot in Rounds 2-7.
What were the odds to win the 2021 NHL Draft lottery?
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