The 5 most offensive potential successful groups within the Alexis Lafreniere Lottery
Not essentially the most poetic lede, is it? But it surely’s an sincere one. Essentially the most hilarious, fascinating, chaotic state of affairs managed to play out throughout Friday evening’s NHL draft lottery. The Ottawa Senators, representing the 29th- and 30th-best factors percentages within the league with their choose and the San Jose Sharks’ choose, held a 25-percent likelihood at successful the lottery. They wound up with the No. Three and No. 5 picks. The last-place Detroit Crimson Wings held 18.5 % odds. Their worst-case state of affairs turned a actuality, as they whiffed on the highest three lottery spots and fell to eighth.
The Los Angeles Kings made out nice, successful the No. 2 spot and the potential so as to add a difference-making expertise equivalent to heart Quinton Byfield to an already-loaded prospect pool. However the wildest doable winner landed the No. 1 choose and the precise to draft mega-talent left winger Alexis Lafreniere.
Give it up for…thriller workforce!
That’s proper. One of many eight dropping groups of the play-in qualifier spherical now holds the No. 1 choose within the 2020 draft. Every of these defeated squads could have a 12.5-percent likelihood of successful.
There’s a lot to unpack right here, morally. Will groups who barely squeaked into the 24-team bracket and have little likelihood to win the Stanley Cup have any motivation to win their sequence? They’ll have a 12.5 % likelihood at Lafreniere. Do you suppose the Montreal Canadiens or Arizona Coyotes have a 12.5 % likelihood on the Stanley Cup?
There’s a really actual likelihood a workforce who by no means would’ve sniffed Lafreniere below regular NHL draft circumstances lands him, sending followers across the league right into a fury. Who can be essentially the most offensive potential lottery winners? Listed here are my high 5.
1. PITTSBURGH PENGUINS
“The hockey gods declare that the Penguins of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania shall draft a famous person participant first general each second decade for the remainder of eternity” might be written in a dusty e-book in a spooky library someplace.
The Pens landed Mario Lemieux first general in 1984, then took a break within the 1990s. They landed Sidney Crosby first general in 2005, then took a break within the 2010s. It’s a brand new decade, which means we all know the Pens will land a No. 1 choice between now and 2029. And there’s already a built-in narrative for an upset in Spherical 1: Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Worth. He was the rationale the Penguins’ gamers reportedly pushed for a best-of-five qualifying spherical over a best-of-three. If he steals some video games and causes an upset…the Penguins, who held the seventh-best report within the NHL this season, would have a 12.5 % shot on the lottery. Oh, child.
2. EDMONTON OILERS
Taylor Corridor, 2010.Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, 2011.Nail Yakupov, 2012.Connor McDavid, 2015.…Alexis Lafreniere, 2020?
Might the Oilers win the No. 1 choose for the fifth time in 11 drafts? That may imply hoarding 45.45 % of the top-overall picks over that stretch – to not point out getting Leon Draisaitl third general in 2014. You may make a case the Oilers have already got the highest two hockey gamers on Earth for the time being in McDavid and Draisaitl. Including Lafreniere would nice a cheat-code configuration. An important growth this season was Draisaitl discovering great chemistry with Kailer Yamamoto on the second line. With Draisaitl spending much less time on McDavid’s left wing, there’s an open spot for a distinction maker.
Lafreniere on McDavid’s left wing would have an opportunity to submit the very best rookie level whole since Crosby’s and Alex Ovechkin’s debut seasons in 2005-06 . The Oilers choosing Lafreniere after opening the play-in spherical as the highest Western Convention seed would trigger fairly the outrage.
3. TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS
Certain, the Leafs haven’t received a Stanley Cup since 1967, they usually’ve squandered the early years of the Auston Matthews/Mitch Marner period with three consecutive first-round playoff exits, in order that they at the least have some sympathizers on the market. However they’ve way more haters – greater than every other NHL franchise. The Leafs are the New York Knicks of hockey, a workforce followers like to see undergo regardless of its failing to win a championship for many years. The Leaf hatred is so sturdy that a good portion of the hockey world would cry its collective tear ducts empty if Toronto landed Lafreniere.
A Leafs win would additionally ship the tinfoil-hat crowd right into a frenzy with conspiracy theories of the NHL fixing the lottery at hand Toronto a Stanley Cup.
4. CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS
Few if any franchises have impressed extra envy over the previous decade or so than the Blackhawks. Their three Stanley Cups are essentially the most of any workforce since 2010. They repeatedly rank among the many league leaders in attendance. They’ve had it good for some time. Hockey is cyclical, and Chicago lastly fell on laborious instances within the standings over the previous few seasons as years of GM Stan Bowman’s salary-cap tapdancing and buying and selling away draft picks throughout championship chases lastly caught as much as him. However now, the Hawks, who’re the bottom seed within the West play-in bracket, may basically skip the bottoming-out section of their rebuild and begin inching towards contender standing once more with Lafreniere. He’d be becoming a member of the workforce whereas Patrick Kane nonetheless has good years left, too, and with different younger weapons to construct round, from Alex DeBrincat to Dylan Strome to Kirby Dach to Adam Boqvist, The Hawks may get good once more quick.
Think about what it might really feel prefer to be a Buffalo Sabres fan, having missed the post-season 9 straight years, watching a workforce with three Cup wins previously 11 seasons scoring the No. 1 choose.
5. MONTREAL CANADIENS
The Habs completed with the 24th-best report within the NHL, so the actual fact they’re slated to compete within the play-in event may very well be construed as extra laughable than their 12.5-percent shot on the No. 1 choose. Nonetheless, below regular, non-COVID circumstances, the 24th-place workforce would have only a 6.0-percent likelihood at wining the lottery. So it’s a significant win that the Habs, who’ve arguably the hardest opponent of any workforce within the play-in, will seemingly lose and get an actual likelihood to attain Lafreniere. A star francophone ahead hasn’t gone first general within the NHL draft since Vincent Lecavalier in 1998.
Lafreniere-to-Montreal would ship the conspiracy theorists into one other frenzy. Like with Toronto, they’d be satisfied the repair was on. Lafreniere can be a dream come true for the Habs, who haven’t had a star francophone scorer since Pierre Turgeon and Vincent Damphousse.
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Tags: prospects, lists, pittsburgh penguins, toronto maple leafs, information, edmonton oilers, chicago blackhawks, nhl draftConnect: Concerning the AuthorMatt LarkinMatt Larkin is a senior author at The Hockey Information and has been a part of the workforce since 2011. He is your one-stop store for deep-dive participant interviews, predictions, statistics, fantasy participant rankings, participant security and hair suggestions. Catch him weekly as host of The Hockey Information Reside and The Hockey Information Podcast.