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NHL Draft

2020 NHL Draft set for Oct. 9-10; No. 1 pick to be drawn Aug. 10

Event rescheduled due to coronavirus; eight losing qualifiers will be in second Lottery phase @NHLdotcom

The 2020 NHL Draft has been tentatively scheduled for Oct. 9 and 10.

The seven-round event will be conducted online.

The NHL announced March 25 that the draft would not be held June 26-27 at Bell Centre in Montreal, as scheduled, due to concerns surrounding the coronavirus. The NHL regular season was paused March 12 and is scheduled to resume Aug. 1 with the Stanley Cup Qualifiers.

The No. 1 pick will be determined Aug. 10 by the Second Phase of the NHL Draft Lottery based on the results of the First Phase, which was held June 26. The pick will be awarded to one of the eight teams that are eliminated from the qualifiers and will be drawn before the start of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Each of the eliminated teams will have a 12.5 percent chance of winning the No. 1 pick.

The First Phase of the lottery included the seven teams that are not part of the 24-team NHL Return to Play Plan, plus eight placeholder positions for the eliminated qualifiers. A separate drawing was held for each of the top three picks.


[RELATED: No. 1 pick to be decided by second drawing | CBA and Return to Play FAQ]


The winning placeholder, designated Team E, had a 2.5 percent chance to be assigned the No. 1 pick, the 12th-best odds among the 15 entries.

Each of the 16 teams that will play in the best-of-5 qualifier series has a chance to win the No. 1 pick: the Arizona Coyotes, Calgary Flames, Carolina Hurricanes, Chicago Blackhawks, Columbus Blue Jackets, Edmonton Oilers, Florida Panthers, Minnesota Wild, Montreal Canadiens, Nashville Predators, New York Islanders, New York Rangers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Toronto Maple Leafs, Vancouver Canucks and Winnipeg Jets.

The Los Angeles Kings moved up to the No. 2 pick, and the Ottawa Senators will have the No. 3 pick, a selection acquired in a trade with the San Jose Sharks.

"We're pretty excited," Los Angeles president Luc Robitaille said. "It's always good to move up or down, whatever you want to call it. It's an exciting moment for the L.A. Kings and the franchise for sure."

The Detroit Red Wings, who had the best odds to win the No. 1 pick, fell to No. 4.

Forward Alexis Lafreniere is expected to be the first pick. The left wing led the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League with 112 points (35 goals, 77 assists) in 52 games for Rimouski this season, and was named the Canadian Hockey League player of the year for a second straight season. Lafreniere and Penguins center Sidney Crosby (2004, 2005) are the only players to win the award twice.

Lafreniere was No. 1 in NHL Central Scouting's final ranking of North American skaters.

"The two outstanding qualities for him are his quickness and his poise," Dan Marr, director of NHL Central Scouting, said. "Every part of the game he's composed, he's smart about it, but he's quick and he has speed so he can execute plays. He sees the ice, reads the play. Everything he does is at a high tempo."

Among the candidates to be drafted with the No. 2 pick is forward Tim Stuetzle of Mannheim in Deutsche Eishockey Liga, the top professional league in Germany. The left wing scored 34 points (seven goals, 27 assists) in 41 games and was named rookie of the year. He was No. 1 in Central Scouting's final ranking of International skaters.

Stuetzle could become the highest-drafted Germany-born player. Leon Draisaitl was selected No. 3 by the Oilers in the 2014 NHL Draft.

Other prospects who could be drafted in the top 10 are center Quinton Byfield; forwards Alexander Holtz, Anton Lundell, Marco Rossi, Jack Quinn and Lucas Raymond; and defensemen Jamie Drysdale and Jake Sanderson.

The NHL previously announced that the 2020 NHL Scouting Combine, scheduled for June 1-6 in Buffalo, was postponed.



1. Placeholder team (to be decided Aug. 10)

2. Los Angeles Kings

3. Ottawa Senators (from San Jose Sharks)

4. Detroit Red Wings

5. Ottawa Senators

6. Anaheim Ducks

7. New Jersey Devils

8. Buffalo Sabres

Picks 4-8 were determined based on inverse order of regular-season points percentage.

Picks No. 9-15 will be assigned to the other teams that lose the eight qualifier series, in inverse order of their points percentage.

Picks 16-31 will be determined by the results of the playoffs.

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