NHL clubs vote to implement change of format to entry draft

The Stanley Cup semifinalists in the NHL playoffs will have the bottom four picks in each and every round, a change meant to give the playoffs more impact on draft selection.

The NHL has not yet announced the changes but two NHL executives, requesting anonymity, confirmed the changes to The Canadian Press on Tuesday. NHL teams voted 23-6-1 in a fax vote over the past week to approve the changes.

The last pick in each round, like before, will be the Cup winner, but now the 29th team to select in each round will be the Cup finalist, with the conference final losing teams slotted 27th and 28th in the draft depending on their regular-season records.

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The remaining 12 playoff teams will be slotted in reverse order of their regular-finish order.

The format remains the same for the 14 non-playoff teams, who are slotted in reverse order of their regular-season finish with a draft lottery allowing teams to move up by up to four places.