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NHL Draft Lottery Set For April 29; Odds Released

The draft lottery results will decide the order of selection in this June's Entry Draft

by Dan Marrazza @GoldenKnights / VegasGoldenKnights.com

A team from a town known for its rolls of the dice, long odds and bouts of gratuitous luck, the Golden Knights' first chance to hit an NHL jackpot will come on April 29.

The NHL announced on Tuesday that the league's annual draft lottery will be held on that date in Toronto, dictating the order that teams will pick in this June's entry draft.

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"I don't know if I've ever played it safe going to the draft," McPhee said in a phone call with season ticket holders earlier this winter. "I believe in swinging for the fences, and trying to find someone who can be a real difference maker. The difference makers are those core guys on your team, those 4-5 players that become elite players are the ones that can really take you a long way. They are hard to find. Those are the ones I'd like to swing for."

The NHL officially announced each team's chances of winning this year's draft lottery.

In normal years, each of the NHL's 14 non-playoff teams participate in the draft lottery, with their chances of winning determined by how low they finish in the standings.

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In short, the further down in the NHL standings that a team finishes, the more likely they are to win the lottery.

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With the Golden Knights added to the equation, this year's lottery will accommodate 15 teams, with Vegas having the same odds of picking first overall as the team with the league's third worst record.

The lowest the Golden Knights can pick in the first round is sixth overall.

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How Vegas fares in the draft lottery will also determine where the team will pick in subsequent rounds. The NHL Entry Draft consists of seven rounds, with each team picking once in each round barring additional trades.

The allocation of odds for the 1st Lottery Draw of the 2017 NHL Draft Lottery is as follows:

Non-Playoff Team
(Fewest Pts. to Most)/Odds

 
Colorado Avalanche/18.0%
Vancouver Canucks/12.1%
Vegas Golden Knights */0.3%
Arizona Coyotes/10.3%
New Jersey Devils /8.5%
Buffalo Sabres/7.6%
Detroit Red Wings/6.7%
Dallas Stars/5.8%
Florida Panthers/5.4%
Los Angeles Kings/4.5%
Carolina Hurricanes/3.2%
Winnipeg Jets/2.7%
Philadelphia Flyers/2.2%
Tampa Bay Lightning/1.8%
New York Islanders/0.9%


Although 10.3 percent chance of receiving the first overall pick seems like a longshot, it's worth mentioning that these are the same odds the Edmonton Oilers had to win the 2015 draft lottery. The Oilers, of course, won the 2015 draft lottery and selected 2016-17 NHL scoring champion Connor McDavid first overall.

George McPhee was also able to nab Alex Ovechkin first overall in the 2003-04 NHL Draft, despite entering the draft lottery with only the league's third best odds.

It's also worth noting the Entry Draft's significance in building NHL team success. 

Among the past three Stanley Cup champions, 48 percent winning teams' rosters were made up of players that team drafted.

This is compared to 46 percent in the NFL, and 31 percent in both MLB and the NBA.

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