Do you feel lucky?

Do you feel lucky Oilers fans?

For the 5th time in franchise history the Oilers have a chance to win the lottery and receive the first overall pick. The odds are different this season, and ironically the four teams whose odds decreased from previous years, Buffalo, Arizona, Edmonton and Toronto, all have a shot at the first overall pick, but all of them also have two first round selections in what is considered the deepest draft in the NHL since 2003.

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The Sabres currently own the 1st and 21st picks.
Arizona has the 2nd and 24th.

The Oilers own the 3rd and the 16th.
The Leafs have the 4th and 25th picks.
Philadelphia owns the 7th and 26th selections
The Jets own the 17th and 27th.

Those picks could change after the lottery, and each team’s second pick could also change depending on which teams make the conference finals. For instance, if the Penguins make the Eastern conference final the Oilers 2nd pick becomes 27th to 30th. However, if Pittsburgh doesn’t make it that far and the Calgary Flames manage to win two series then the Oilers would actually get the 15th pick and Calgary would pick between 27-30.

But, the lottery is what matters the most to the 14 non-playoff teams. Here is a breakdown of the odds for tomorrow’s lottery. I’ve included the odds from the previous formula so you can see how the odds have changed.

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1st pick Buffalo: 20.0% (down from 25%)

2nd pick Arizona: 13.5% (down from 18.8%)

3rd pick Edmonton: 11.5% (down from 14.2%)

4th pick Toronto: 9.5% (down from 10.7%)

5th Carolina: 8.5% (up from 8.1%)

6th New Jersey: 7.5%(up from 6.2%)

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7th Philadelphia: 6.5% (up from 4.7%)

8th Columbus: 6.0% (up from 3.6%)

9th San Jose: 5.0% (up from 2.7%)

10th Colorado: 3.5% (up from 2.1%)

11th Florida: 3.0% (up from 1.5%)

12th Dallas: 2.5% (up from 1.1%)

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13th Los Angeles: 2.0% (up from 0.8%)

14th Boston: 1.0% (up from 0.5%)

During the previous 19 draft lotteries, the top-four seeds have combined to win it fourteen times. The #1 seed has won it six times, #2 has won it four, #3 has won it three times and the #4 seed has won it once. That was when their odds equaled 68.7%, but this year the top four picks have a combined 54.7% chance of winning.

The #6 seed has never won, while #5 and #8 have won it twice and the #7 seed, Los Angeles Kings, won the very first draft lottery in 1995.


Every fanbase in the lottery will argue they deserve it, as they should. I’ve heard some Oilers fans suggest the Oilers shouldn’t win it because they will just ruin Connor McDavid. I’d argue Oilers fans deserve it due to the incredible pain they’ve endured watching the previous nine seasons. Don’t fool yourself, if the Oilers win the lottery, you’ll celebrate.

Buffalo lost the lottery last year, and their fans have never won the Stanley Cup. They deserve it.
The Arizona Coyotes desperately need a franchise player, and if they or the Sabres don’t win it, the Coyotes will miss out on both McDavid and Jack Eichel. Ouch.

Leafs fans haven’t celebrated a Championships since 1967. They’ve endured a lot of losing.



Every team could use McDavid, but I believe the Columbus Blue Jackets and Dallas Stars would become instantly dangerous next season. The Blue Jackets are only in the lottery due to a ridiculous amount of injuries. They had 12 regulars out of the lineup at one point this season.

Ryan Johansen, Brandon Dubinsky and McDavid would give them an excellent trio of centres along with wingers like Nick Foligno, Scott Hartnell, Boone Jenner and Cam Atkinson.

Only Tampa Bay scored more goals than the Dallas Stars last year. Imagine how potent their offence would be if they added McDavid?

The LA Kings would be a Cup contender again as well, and the Boston Bruins desperately need some skilled youth amongst their forwards.

If a lower seeded team manages to win the lottery, McDavid will have a much better chance of making the playoffs next season than if the Sabres, Coyotes, Oilers, Leafs, Hurricanes or Devils win. It would also alter the McDavid vs. Eichel debate, because McDavid would instantly be surrounded by a better team than Eichel would in Buffalo.

One franchise will benefit greatly from tomorrow, and the Coyotes are the one with the most to lose, because they could miss out on McDavid or Eichel if a team below them (odds wise) wins the lottery.

One player won’t win the Stanley Cup, but adding McDavid to a franchise will definitely inject some belief that a Stanley Cup is possible in the future.



  • Currently there are six teams without a first round pick: Pittsburgh, the
    Islanders, Blackhawks, Predators, Blues and Rangers. A first round playoff exit will sting even more by not having a first rounder in such a deep draft.

  • Bill Scott will represent the Oilers at the lottery. “I’m not a superstitious guy,” he told me. “But fortunately I know a few who are, and they have armed me with a couple good luck charms which I can’t reveal,” he smiled. The Oilers will pick either 1st, 3rd or 4th, so they will be picking a very good player regardless of what happens on Saturday at 6 p.m. MST on Hockey Night in Canada.
  • My head says the Coyotes will win the lottery, but I’m going to pick the Columbus Blue Jackets. Just a hunch. I’m not a conspiracy theory type of guy, so I don’t expect the Maple Leafs to win.
  • I’d love to see the Oilers win, mainly because of the ensuing photoshop contest that would occur on the Nation. It would be epic.
  • Nine days until our MS Bike Tour charity poker tourney. The winner receives flight, hotel and a seat ($10,000 cost) at the WSOP main event. You can register at Good luck. The tourney is at the River Cree Resort and Casino on Sunday, April 26th. Registration starts at 1:30, tourney begins at 3 p.m.

Recently by Jason Gregor:  

    • SSB1963

      Bill Scott, is the Asst. G.M. of the Oilers.His previous position was that as G M of the OKC barons.

      You wont see the Brillo Kid until June when the ‘actual’ draft takes places. Saturdays exercise defines the pecking order for the actual draft.

    • Zamboni Driver

      That’s only at the actual draft….that fat little Katz kid is going to take over the Oilers one day…hahaha and our President of Hockey Operations will be Hall, GM will be Eberle, Coach will be Nugent Hopkins and Head scout will be Yak…his new “Old boys club” since he was present at each of their draft day.

  • SSB1963

    Just realized I can’t count properly anymore. Frequency is actually much closer.


    Average us 32.9 (=4×115/14)
    Lucky number 5, 11, 12
    Unlucky number 1, 6, 7

  • SSB1963

    If it isn’t the Oilers, I hope it is a team in the East. Then we don’t have to be reminded quite as much about what we missed out on. I think he would look good in a Philly jersey. Giroux and McDavid one-two bunch, yowzer.

  • Jason Gregor

    I wish the oilers would trade everyone for draft picks cuz this draft talk is just so fun!!! *wonders why I’m on an oiler site while I’m preparing to watch 2 canadian teams battle in the playoffs.

  • Jason Gregor

    @JG; I’m surprised, given your theme, no one played along;

    “Who deserves it?”

    – Deserves got nothing to do with it (the best line in Unforgiven).

  • Serious Gord

    An entire work week and still no ON post on the mact presser. Conspiracy? Mutual ass-covering?

    I have no idea. But something is rotten in strathcona.

  • Serious Gord

    For those who think the pick is fixed:

    There are two teams that would compete for most beneficial to the league:

    1. Toronto – naturally the bias of the readers/posters on this site makes most of those reading this see that team as the best option. And it certainly is for the Canadian market. And beaucoups money would be made if they’ were to get CM.

    And as bob mcown has noted many times, Toronto has never had a player who was the best player in the league. ever.

    But Toronto is not in the American north east. And that’s where the real money is.

    2. Philadelphia- Philly already has had a CM level of player once before in Eric lindros – the most dominant forward in the History of the game when he was healthy. And at CMs age he was more dominant than any player save Orr.

    So on a who deserves it most list, they clearly don’t rank very high.

    But philly is in middle of the US north east media market and CM would get a lot of games in the biggest media market teams.

    And that means dough – lots of it – for the league.

    Boston would be a close second to philly, but their media coverage doesn’t bleed into OHIO and Michigan and New Jersey like Philadelphia does.

    So if philly wins the tinfoil-hatted amoung us will sleep soundly.

  • Blog Participant

    As far as the chances of winning the draft lottery, while your percentages are technically correct, it doesn’t show just how much worse it is for buffalo this year than it was for the last place team last year. It went from around a 48% chance to retain the first pick to now, a 20% chance. Likewise the best non playoff teams chance to pick first went from 0 to 1%.

  • Reg Dunlop

    “My head says the Coyotes will win the lottery, but I’m going to pick the Columbus Blue Jackets. Just a hunch. I’m not a conspiracy theory type of guy, so I don’t expect the Maple Leafs to win.”

    I hope not. I think arizona is a wasted NHL franchise and should be moved to Saskatoon! Mcdavid in Sask. would be awsome to a DESERVING province who would completely embrace an NHL team. I know a sask team wouldn’t lose $7 million a year.

  • vetinari

    Another way of looking at Columbus when compared to Edmonton is that they had up to 12 regulars out of the lineup and they still finished ahead of us in the standings.

    Hoping for #1 but expecting #4.

  • Reg Dunlop

    If Arizona falls to 3rd I think a real opportunity to get OEL exists. The player that could turn their fortunes around is local boy Auston Matthews, next year’s wunderkind. The oil’s 1st rounder in 2016 may be more attractive to the Coyotes than this years 4th overall. Make it happen Craig. Time for real NHL players is now.

  • Reg Dunlop

    Jason Gregor, how does your head say that the Coyotes will win the lottery? It’s a lottery, whose very purpose is to be a random assignment. You just said the odds of the Coyotes winning the lottery are 13.5%. Why should you believe their odds of winning are in any way different from that?

    Short of believing in a conspiracy (and you claim not to), you are trying to predict the outcome of a bunch of numbers written on 1000 lottery balls. Recounting the historical results of previous drafts shouldn’t inform your prediction either. You know IN ADVANCE the PRECISE probabilities of every team winning.

    And if your head had to pick a team that would win, it should be the Sabres, not the Coyotes.

    • Jason Gregor

      Why do we deserve it? Because people show up every game and support an incompetent management group? You’re watching the flames/canucks play in the playoffs and not one of them have a 1st overall pick in the lineup.

  • Jason Gregor

    I am amazed that us oilers fans would be “happy” winning the draft lottery. I personally would be embarrassed. The draft rules have this year been changed because of the oilers. If the oilers did win the draft lottery, since they do have a chance, I would be supportive of them trading the pick for embarrassment reasons alone! I don’t care the return, I would even say we should concede the pick to a deserving team. Adding mcdavid would make the roster just plain disgusting. An entire top 6, save a pouliot or two, that are entitled me first type players. Not a chance that roster succeeds.

  • Rusty Patenaude

    Entry Draft Order
    The order of selection among the Member Clubs in each season shall be determined in the following manner:
    A composite of all Member Clubs shall be prepared by placing:
    i) First the Clubs which failed to qualify for the preceding playoffs in the order of points earned by each of them in the regular schedule of the preceding season starting with the Club having the lowest points total and followed by the Club having the next lowest points total, and so forth.
    ii) The Clubs which participated in the preceding playoffs (but had not been ranked first in their respective Divisions and had not won the Stanley Cup that season) in order of points earned by each of them in the regular schedule of the preceding season starting with the Club having the lowest total points and followed by the Club having the next lowest total points, and so forth.
    iii) The Clubs which had been ranked first in their Divisions during the next preceding season (but had not won the Stanley Cup that season) in the order of points earned by each of them in the regular schedule of the preceding season starting with the Club having the lowest total points and followed by the Club having the next lowest total points, and so forth.
    iv) The Stanley Cup winner shall select last, thus, positioning all Clubs on the list.

    In the event of a tie for any position, such tie shall be resolved by application of the rules governing the determination of final League standings. The resulting list shall constitute the order of selection.

    That is what the rule states. Only the Stanley Cup winner’s draft position is based on their playoff performance. No ii says (but had not been ranked first in their respective Divisions and had not won the Stanley Cup that season)

  • HockeyYoda

    9-1 odds are just too long to hope for, so I am hoping one of the two teams with the best odds win the lottery so we will pick third. I know how the lottery will work, but wonder how it will be announced. Does anyone know? Will they use the countdown system starting with a card showing where Boston’s pick is and then LA, until one of the cards reads ‘1’, or will they just turn over a card with the lottery winning team’s name on it?

  • Quicksilver ballet

    Here’s to hoping….

    Continued futility awaits if the Oilers fail to secure that first overall selection this evening. See them wandering aimlessly in the desert for a another 3-4 yrs if they draft 3rd or 4th in June. Then, if you can believe it another rebuild will start.

    Connor McDavid is the only thing that could salvage this gong show, or allow this organization to almost appear normal again. He alone could buy this management group 2-3 more yrs. Or, he could even just delay the inevitable under this management group.

    Agree with Serious Gord. There’s something rotten in Edmonton with the oiler gestapo locking out all things reality based from getting attention. The zero tolerance factor from the media perspective will no doubt allow this gong show to continue for the foreseeable future. Like the blind faith ticket buyers, they’ve proven themselves to be just a bunch of sheeple. Not one Shepherd in the bunch. Guess it’s only fitting we’re stuck with a 2nd rate media group, to work alongside the people who turned the oilers into the B/C organization it has become.

  • How embarrassing, still hoping for a good draft pick. The best draft pick we could have hoped for is the dismissal of the old boys club a few years back. We need a veteran stud dman, if it takes Hall and a draft pick get it done.