Home FitnessOutdoors Dont expect another NHL Draft Lottery gift for the Rangers – New York Post

Dont expect another NHL Draft Lottery gift for the Rangers – New York Post

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The Rangers earned a reward in last year’s draft lottery for being the first qualifying team eliminated from the expanded bubble playoffs. That gave them the right to draft coveted Alexis Lafreniere with the No. 1 pick.

Out popped the pingpong ball with the Blueshirts’ crest, and with it came extensive baseless conspiracy theories that the lottery had been rigged (just like the belief something was fishy when the Knicks landed the right to draft Patrick Ewing in the NBA lottery in 1985).

In Rangerstown, meanwhile, when that pingpong ball was revealed last August, it was hailed as a gift from the hockey gods, photoshopped in a priest’s hands and garnered celebrity status among Blueshirts fans.

Let’s just say the Rangers squeezed every last drop of content out of that white plastic sphere. It’s only right they have a 1 percent chance of it happening again.

The Rangers’ odds may be at the bottom in the 2021 NHL Draft Lottery, which airs at 7 p.m. Wednesday on NHL Network, but after having either the No. 1 or No. 2 pick in the last two drafts, it may be time to share the wealth.

NHL Draft Lottery 2021
The Rangers won last year’s NHL Draft Lottery and picked Alexis Lafreniere No. 1 overall.
Getty Images (2)

It should be much easier to do with the emergence of the NHL’s 32nd franchise, the Seattle Kraken, which will embark on its first season in 2021-22 after the expansion draft on July 21. Much like the Vegas Golden Knights during their inaugural draft-lottery participation in 2017, the Kraken are guaranteed no lower than the fifth-overall selection.

Seattle owns a 10.3 percent chance of landing the No. 1 pick, calculating to accommodate the addition of a 16th team to the lottery. Additionally, the Coyotes will fulfill the second half of their punishment for violating the league’s combine test policy in 2019-20 by forfeiting their 2021 first-round pick.

The bottom-dwelling Sabres have the best odds, at 16.6 percent, to receive the No. 1 pick. Then come the Ducks, who finished six points ahead of Buffalo with the second-worst record in the league, at 12.1 percent.

The Devils are right in the thick of the teams with the best odds, owning the same percentage as the Kraken, 10.3. If the Devils were to score the first-overall pick, it would be the third time they had done so in five years.

While Lafreniere was the undisputed crown jewel of 2020, the closest to that description this time around is likely Michigan defenseman Owen Power, who was a star in the USHL in 2019-20, then carried his talents over to the Wolverines, with 16 points in 26 NCAA games.

Owen Power #25 of Canada in action
Owen Power is the top defenseman heading into the 2021 NHL Draft.
Getty Images

The next tier of players are U.S. National Team Development Program defenseman Luke Hughes (the younger brother of the Devils’ 2019 first-overall pick, Jack Hughes), Michigan center Matthew Beniers, OHL center Mason McTavish, WHL forward Dylan Guenther, SHL forward William Eklund, USA Hockey National Team Development Program forward Chaz Lucius and Michigan forward Kent Johnson.

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