The NHL Draft Lottery – in place since 1995 – is an exciting event for teams that miss the playoffs, looking to see who’ll get the opportunity to draft the top talent in that summer’s draft. But it appears as though the league is making some changes to the lottery that could change the outcome and incentives as soon as this summer.
According to Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston, the league is proposing the following:
• Teams limited to no more than two lottery wins in a five-year period.
• Teams only allowed to jump 10 spots with a lottery win.
• A reduction in the number of picks decided by lottery from three to two.
The proposed changes were outlined in a memo circulated to clubs on Monday and are subject to approval by the NHL’s Board of Governors, according to Johnston.
In the past, the Chicago Blackhawks have benefitted mightily from the draft lottery. Chicago won the lottery in 1999, but could move up only a maximum of four spots, moving from eighth to fourth. They traded the pick to the Vancouver Canucks, which helped Vancouver select the Sedin Twins.
In 2007, the Blackhawks moved from fifth to first in the lottery, picking Patrick Kane first overall. It was (and still is) Chicago’s only first overall pick in NHL Draft history.
Between 2009 and 2017, the Blackhawks did not have a pick in the lottery. They were too busy winning Stanley Cups.
In 2018, Chicago fell from the seventh pick to the eighth pick, selecting Adam Boqvist, and in 2019, moved from the tenth pick to the third pick selecting Kirby Dach (who, hey, is back on the ice today).
Currently, the Blackhawks would not be in this summer’s lottery since they are in a playoff position in the Central Division.