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Chances of winning draft lottery

The Hockey News

The Hockey News

The good thing about the NHL draft lottery is that even the last-place team has a less than 50-50 chance of securing the first overall pick, thereby dissuading the temptation for a team to tank it late in the season.

The bad thing about the NHL draft lottery is that there is such a big odds difference between finishing last and finishing second last that it behooves a non-playoff team to tank it discreetly.

Finish last overall and the team’s chance of winning the NHL draft lottery is 48.2 percent. Finish second-last overall and that drops to 18.8 percent. Think that’s incentive to drop those final few games of the season with nothing else on the line? Shhhh, that’s just between us.

So if you’re the Los Angeles Kings or Toronto Maple Leafs and it’s looking pretty clear you’re not going to make a run for the playoffs, here’s something to keep in mind as you close out the season.

Sarnia offensive phenom Steven Stamkos is the odds-on favorite to be the first pick overall.

The following is a list of the percent chances the bottom 10 teams have of winning the draft lottery. The most a team can move up in the draft is four positions, so only the bottom five teams have a chance to secure the first overall pick by winning the draft lottery.

10. 21st place, 2.1 percent chance. Lottery win moves draft selection spot up to sixth.

9. 22nd place, 2.7 percent chance. Lottery win moves draft selection spot up to fifth.

8. 23rd place, 3.6 percent chance. Lottery win moves draft selection spot up to fourth.

7. 24th place, 4.7 percent chance. Lottery win moves draft selection spot up to third.

6. 25th place, 6.2 percent chance. Lottery win moves draft selection spot up to second.

5. 26th place, 8.1 percent chance of securing the first overall pick.

4. 27th place, 10.7 percent chance of securing the first overall pick.

3. 28th place, 14.2 percent chance of securing the first overall pick.

2. 29th place, 18.8 percent chance of securing the first overall pick.

1. 30th place, 25 percent chance you’ll win the lottery and 23.2 percent chance teams from sixth last to 14th last win the lottery, for a total of 48.2 percent chance of securing the first overall pick.

The Top 10 appears Wednesdays only on thehockeyenews.com. If you enjoy this feature, subscribe to The Hockey News magazine for the exclusive countdown, Starting From 10, and other great features from the world of hockey.

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