The Blackhawks will learn their position in the 2021 NHL Draft on Wednesday night when the NHL Draft Lottery takes place at the NHL Network studio in Secaucus, N.J.
Coverage will begin at 6 p.m. CT on NBCSN and NHL Network in the U.S., as well as Sportsnet and TVA Sports in Canada.
Two drawings will be held -- one to determine the No. 1 overall pick and another to determine who holds the No. 2 overall selection. Chicago enters the lottery with the No. 12 seeded odds by virtue of the inversed final standings from the 2020-21 season, plus the addition of the expansion newcomers in Seattle with the No. 3 seed.
Chicago enters the draft lottery with a 2.7% chance at winning the No. 1 overall pick in the first drawing. The odds for the remaining teams will increase on a proportionate basis for the second lottery draw based on which club wins the first draw.
The Blackhawks could drop to the No. 13 overall selection if a lower-seeded team wins either of the draws. The most the team could drop is the No. 14 overall pick, but only on the low odds that a lower-seeded team wins both drawings.
2021 NHL Draft Lottery Odds for No. 1 Pick
1. Buffalo Sabres -- 16.6%
2. Anaheim Ducks -- 12.1%
3. Seattle Kraken* -- 10.3%
4. New Jersey Devils -- 10.3%
5. Columbus Blue Jackets -- 8.5%
6. Detroit Red Wings -- 7.6%
7. San Jose Sharks -- 6.7%
8. Los Angeles Kings -- 5.8%
9. Vancouver Canucks -- 5.4%
10. Ottawa Senators -- 4.5%
11. Arizona Coyotes** -- 3.1%
12. Chicago Blackhawks -- 2.7%
13. Calgary Flames -- 2.2%
14. Philadelphia Flyers -- 1.8%
15. Dallas Stars -- 1.4%
16. New York Rangers -- 1.0%
If history tells us anything, recent luck could slightly be on the side of the Blackhawks this year.
The last time Chicago took part in the full draft lottery in 2019, they also entered with the 12th best odds at the No. 1 overall pick. Chicago's number was pulled that year (though in the now-defunct third drawing) and the Blackhawks moved up to the No. 3 overall selection, where they drafted Kirby Dach.
It was the third time Chicago moved up via the draft lottery, including the 2007 draft when Chicago took Patrick Kane first overall.
As part of the recent changes to the draft lottery format announced in March, the number of lottery draws this year has been reduced to two from the previous three-draw setup, limiting how far teams who don't win a draft lottery draw can fall in the final draft order.
Starting next season, teams will be limited by the number of draft selections a team can move up by winning the lottery to 10 (i.e. No. 15 seed winning would result in drafting at No. 5 overall). With Chicago holding the No. 12 selection entering the lottery this season and no limitation in place yet, the Blackhawks still could move into the top spot by winning the first lottery draw -- a possibility that won't exist for the No. 12 seed next season.
Beginning next year, teams will also be limited in how frequently they can move up by virtue of a lottery drawing, a maximum of two moves up the draft board in a five-year period.
* Seattle Kraken assigned No. 3 seed with same lottery odds as No. 4 seed (10.3%).
** NHL announced forfeiture of Arizona Coyotes' 1st-round pick in 2021 NHL Draft in sanctions announced Aug. 26, 2020. Arizona being selected in either Lottery Draw will result in a re-draw.