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Lightning Round: A mystery team wins the 2020 NHL Draft Lottery

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The actual winner of the first overall pick will be determined after the qualifying round

2020 NHL Draft Lottery Photo by Bruce Bennett/NHLI via Getty Images

The 2020 NHL Draft Lottery, which was held on Friday night, has been criticized since the idea was presented to the public. Mostly because half of the teams which will eventually participate in the lottery still need to lose in the qualifying round and were simply replaced with so-called placeholders teams. And of course, because this is the NHL, one of these teams has taken the first spot.

The team, which was originally determined as the Team E, had just a 2.5% chance of winning the lottery and made the biggest jump in history of draft lotteries to secure a first overall pick. In a normal lottery, this is the equivalent of the 12th place team winning. It’s also the first time in history when the teams with the seven worst records in the regular season have been left without a first overall pick.

The second part of the Draft Lottery will be held between the qualifying round and the first round of playoffs. All eight teams eligible for Phase 2 of the lottery will have an equal 12.5% chance of winning.

Now the first overall pick, which is very likely to be Alexis Lafreniere, will be decided between eight teams eliminated in the play-in round. For example, it can be the Edmonton Oilers who have won it four times during the last decade or the Arizona Coyotes, the current team of Taylor Hall, whose team has owned the first overall pick six times over the same timespan. The Athletic’s Dom Luszczyszyn summarized odds for teams left in the competition. This accounts for their chances of losing in the play-in round as well as the 12.5% chance in the actual lottery.

After recording one of the worst seasons in modern history of the NHL, the Detroit Red Wings have been left without any of the top three picks. The team’s general manager Steve Yzerman said that he’s not surprised, however not going to “feel sorry for ourselves“.

The Ottawa Senators, which owned the San Jose Sharks’ pick besides their own, ended up with the No. 3 and No. 5 picks.

Pierre Dorion also didn’t rule out a possibility of trading one of their picks. However, the chances are very small.

Other News and Notes

Tampa Bay Lightning beat writer Joe Smith disclosed what happens with players who tested positive for COVID-19.

But sources told The Athletic’s Mike Russo the NHL and NHLPA recently agreed to a test-based substitute for the 14-day quarantine. That means players can come out of quarantine as soon as the eighth day as long as four consecutive tests spaced 48 hours apart come back negative, they have no symptoms and the team’s medical personnel agree that ending the quarantine poses no risk of infecting other players.

According to ESPN’s Greg Wyshynski, the league and players are closing in on a new collective bargaining agreement

The National Hockey League Players’ Association is expected to vote on both a new CBA and the return-to-play protocols that would restart the 2019-20 season this summer, and that would require a vote involving all its members. That hadn’t happened as of Friday night. Among the return-to-play issues were the approval of safety protocols and the two “hub” cities that will host 24 teams in the Stanley Cup playoffs.

After firing almost the half of their staff, the Buffalo Sabres announced some replacements

Mikhail Vorobyev has become another Russian AHLer to sign a deal with a KHL team.

The Philadelphia Flyers mascot Gritty supported the LBGTQ movement in a short video on their Twitter page during Pride month.