What does it cost for a team to move up at the NHL Draft? What can a team gain by moving down?
The following table shows every move up and down in the first round between 2001 and 2011 that involved only draft picks – in other words, these are strictly pick-for-pick trades. San Jose was by far the most aggressive team in this time period, orchestrating six trades that saw them move up in the draft order. Anaheim and Calgary were the clubs most willing to move down, each doing so on five occasions. A pick listed in brackets () was one that the team moving down gave up along with the higher pick.
|Year||Moving Up||Pick(s)||Moving Down||Picks|
|2003||Pittsburgh||1||Florida||3, 55 (78)|
|2008||Toronto||5||N.Y. Islanders||7, 37, 68|
|2008||Nashville||7||N.Y. Islanders||9, 40|
|2005||San Jose||8||Atlanta||12, 49, 207|
|2007||San Jose||9||St. Louis||13, 44, 87|
|2008||Buffalo||12||Los Angeles||13, 74|
|2008||Los Angeles||12||Anaheim||17, 28|
|2009||N.Y. Islanders||12||Minnesota||16, 77, 181|
|2005||N.Y. Rangers||12||Atlanta||16, 41|
|2002||Washington||13||Dallas||26, 42, 185|
|2010||Los Angeles||15||Florida||19, 59|
|2009||N.Y. Islanders||16||Columbus||26, 37, 62, 92 (77)|
|2003||San Jose||16||Boston||21, 66, 107|
|2006||San Jose||16||Montreal||20, 53|
|2003||New Jersey||17||Edmonton||22, 68|
|2007||St. Louis||18||Calgary||24, 70|
|2004||N.Y. Rangers||19||Calgary||24, 46 (247)|
|2009||New Jersey||20||Calgary||23, 84|
|2004||New Jersey||20||Dallas||22, 88|
|2008||Washington||21||New Jersey||23, 54|
|2010||Montreal||22||Phoenix||27, 57 (113)|
|2004||San Jose||22||Dallas||28, 52, 91 (153)|
|2008||Minnesota||23||New Jersey||24, 73|
|2001||Ottawa||23||Philadelphia||27, 34, 225|
|2001||Florida||24||New Jersey||44, 48|
|2003||Florida||25||Tampa Bay||34, 41, 192|
|2006||St. Louis||25||New Jersey||30, 77|
|2007||San Jose||28||Washington||41, 57|
|2006||Phoenix||29||Detroit||41, 47 (152)|
|2009||Tampa Bay||29||Detroit||32, 75|
|2010||N.Y. Islanders||30||Chicago||35, 58|
*option to switch first round picks in 2003 (not exercised)
What does this mean for Nation Network teams?
The Oilers own the first overall pick. Twice in this time period, the first overall was moved strictly for picks, and in both cases the return was pretty minimal. If Edmonton is only interested in moving down one or two spots, history suggests other teams will not give up much to make that happen.
The Leafs own the fifth overall pick. They gave up two other strong draft choices to move up two spots last time around (much more than Pittsburgh paid to land the number one pick in 2003); based on the trades for fourth and seventh overall a second round pick (Toronto owns the 35th overall selection) is likely the cost to move up a spot or two or the return to move down a spot or two.
The Jets own the ninth overall pick. The cost for moving up a few spots is probably a second-round pick (Winnipeg owns the 39th overall selection) while the benefit of moving down a short distance is probably in the same range. For a drop of ~4 spots, the San Jose/St. Louis trade back in 2007 suggests that a second and a late third would probably be just recompense.
The Flames own the 14th overall pick. It would likely cost a second-round pick to move up a few positions, but the Flames have already traded away their 2012 and 2013 second round picks. They do have the 75th, 105th and 124th overall picks in this year’s draft that they could potentially trade. Moving down a couple of slots has historically fetched anywhere from a second-rounder to an eighth-rounder.
The Canucks own the 26th overall pick. They have the 57th and 147th overall picks if they want to try and move up, as well as all their picks next year, so it’s reasonable to think that they have the assets to move up to five slots higher, if there’s a willing partner. Trading down at this point in the draft usually fetches a pair of second round picks.
As for moving up to land an additional first-round pick, Edmonton owns the 32nd overall selection, Toronto the 35th and Winnipeg the 39th. Edmonton has the most assets to make a bid at moving up – a pair of third-round picks this year as well as a pair of second-round picks next year. Winnipeg has one third-rounder as well as two second-round and two third-round picks next year. Toronto would need to dip into next year’s draft to move up – they own both a second and third-round pick in 2013.
This week by Jonathan Willis
- The Edmonton Oilers and their window to win
- Lennart Petrell returns to the Edmonton Oilers
- St. Louis Blues re-sign Barret Jackman
- Are the Blue Jackets and Oilers good trading partners?
- Dale Tallon: things get worse before they get better
- The Edmonton Oilers are getting a little light on forward prospects
- How much did Nail Yakupov’s knee injury impact his offensive numbers?
- Should the Edmonton Oilers talk to San Jose about Douglas Murray?
- Big decisions: Jarret Stoll and Matt Greene for Lubomir Visnovsky