The Columbus Blue Jackets Have The fifth Finest Odds To Win The NHL Draft Lottery; Make First Choice No Decrease Than seventh

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The NHL postseason is here.

But more than any of the dazzling overtime games (of which there were many) on the opening weekend of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, it was a late regular season game between eliminated teams in a different division that the Columbus Blue Jackets had their eye on.

When the Vancouver Canucks brought the Calgary Flames into overtime on Sunday evening, they gave the Canucks their 48th season point, with only two games left on the program. With more regular wins of the season than the Blue Jackets secured the point that Vancouver would end up ahead of Columbus in the overall standings and that the Blue Jackets had (slightly) better chances of making the top selection in this summer’s NHL Entry Draft.

Even without the top pick, Vancouver’s comeback with four goals and the third period to send the game into overtime (Calgary won the game 6-5) ensured that the Blue Jackets would finish no less than seventh in the draft (as opposed to the eighth). and gave general bumps in the design to all of their potential landing sites.

The Blue Jackets finished 28th in the NHL, but the Seattle Kraken expansion entered the league the next season and received the third-best odds on the top picks, giving Columbus’ fourth-worst record the fifth-best. (Damn it, Kraken.)

With the worst record in the league, the Buffalo Sabers have the best chance of making the top pick (18.5%) and are guaranteed to have a top 3 pick. Anaheim, Seattle, and New Jersey are next on the list and guaranteed no lower than 4th, 5th, and 6th place.

According to the rules of the NHL Draft Lottery, which will take place on June 2nd, the Blue Jackets have secured one of five places in the July draft:

  • 1. Total (ratio: 8.5%)

  • 2. Total (ratio: 8.7%)

  • 5th overall (rate: 24.0%)

  • 6. Total (ratio: 45.3%)

  • 7. Total (ratio: 13.5%)

Landing just one place lower would have increased the Blue Jackets rate of the top 2 selection from 17.2% to 15.3%. Not a huge jump, but one that could make all the difference if the ping pong balls fall.

While there isn’t a dominant, indispensable player on the potential pool this season, there are several players who could keep an eye on the Blue Jackets early in the draft, so every point matters. The University of Michigan’s Owen Power is the number one pick in most taunts, and he’s not the only defender to make the top 5. However, should Columbus keep the choice (a trade is always possible) and decide to pick a striker to make it into the top seven first, it confirms that he can either get Matthew Beniers, Dylan Guenther or William Eklund having a split created by the others of the pack as the three best offensive weapons of the design.

The NHL draft is scheduled to begin on July 23.