The recent NHL Draft Lottery was quite a shocker that had many fans turning their heads in question. The worst team in the league, the Detroit Redwings, ended up not getting the first overall pick with a very unpleasant record of 17-49-5 (39 points).
The New York Rangers are now in an interesting spot of circumstances given the current playoff system.
If New York loses, they have a chance at the #1 overall pick. But if they move on, their pick will most likely be a top 15 pick which is still beneficial because of how deeply filled of prospects this upcoming draft is. This benefits the Rangers because now the #1 overall pick is up for grabs, and most likely for franchise player, Alexis Lafreniére.
The Rangers are currently in the play-in round against the Carolina Hurricanes who were in the playoffs last season. The Hurricanes had a good run for the Stanley Cup after sweeping the New York Islanders in just 4 games, but it wasn’t nearly enough to defeat the Boston Bruins. Boston ended up reverse sweeping the Hurricanes 4 games to none.
The Blueshirts had a strong run before COVID-19 came into play. Just two points out of a wildcard spot behind Carolina and Columbus. The odds are at anyone’s favor to win the cup. It just matters how well the teams bounce back from the pandemic.
As for the Draft Lottery, if the Rangers do move on, it is not the end of the world due to the fact of how good their prospect system is. Also, with everyone thinking Detroit winning the lottery is now it’s up for grabs for any of the play-in teams. All teams obviously looking to move on to the next round and try and win the Stanley Cup, but if they lose they’ll have a 12.5% chance at most likely the top pick in the draft in Alexis Lafreniére.
Photo: AP Photo / Sarah Stier