2023 NHL Draft Lottery: Date, No. 1 Pick Odds, Top Prospects originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

Let the Connor Bedard sweepstakes begin!

In fact, the race for last place in the NHL began a while ago when Bedard was going to be a team’s lottery ticket.

A generational talent of this caliber can quickly shift an off-season NHL team’s focus from bouncing ping-pong balls to winning the Stanley Cup. Bedard enters the draft as arguably the most hyped hockey prospect since Connor McDavid in 2015.

That means there’s a lot at stake this year, with a consensus #1 pick and other coveted prospects waiting to be picked at the top of the draft.

Here’s everything you need to know about the NHL draft lottery…

When is the 2023 NHL Draft Lottery?

The 2023 NHL Draft Lottery will be held on Monday, May 8 at 7:00 p.m. ET.

How does the NHL draft lottery work?

The NHL team that finishes the regular season with the fewest points has the best odds.

This team has an 18.5 percent chance of being number 1 in the lottery. The odds for the team with the second-worst record drops to 13.5 percent, and the odds for all 16 teams not to qualify for the postseason begin to decline.

However, as part of the NHL’s lottery system changes coming in 2022, only the bottom 11 teams will be eligible for the #1 pick. Teams can reach a maximum of 10 spots in the draft lottery. So if the team with the 16th worst record in the league won the lottery, they would only jump to 6th place.

Teams are randomly assigned four-digit combinations that are computer-generated. Numbered balls are placed in the lottery machine and four balls are drawn at 15 second intervals. The team with the winning combination gets the tip.

The numbered balls are returned to the machine and the process is repeated for the next selection. The number of draws has been reduced from three to two starting in 2022 to ensure that the team finishing last in the standings does not pick later than No. 3.

The rest of the draft order is determined by reverse ranking order.

Teams cannot win the lottery more than twice in a five-year period stretching back to 2022. So if the 2022 lottery winner Montreal Canadiens wins the No. 1 pick again this year, they won’t qualify for the next top three draft lotteries.

Which team has the best odds in the 2023 NHL Draft Lottery?

The Anaheim Ducks secured the best lottery odds by the end of the season thanks to a 13-game winning streak.

After losing its regular-season finale 5-2 to the Buffalo Sabers on Friday, Columbus finished on 59 points, level on points with Chicago for the second lowest points in the league. The Blue Jackets held the tiebreak of the fewest bylaw wins against the Blackhawks (15 wins to 18) to earn the second-best odds in the lottery.

The San Jose Sharks finished with fourth-best odds.

Here are the odds for each of the 11 teams qualifying for Pick #1:

1. Anaheim Ducks, 23-47-12 (58 points) – 18.5%

2. Columbus Blue Jackets, 25-48-9 (59) – 13.5%

3. Chicago Blackhawks, 26-49-7 (59) – 11.5%

4. San Jose Sharks, 22-44-16 (60) – 9.5%

5. Montreal Canadiens, 31-45-6 (68) – 8.5%

6. Arizona Coyotes, 28-40-14 (70) – 7.5%

7. Philadelphia Flyers, 31-38-13 (75) – 6.5%

8. Washington Capitals, 35-37-10 (80) – 6.0%

9. Detroit Red Wings, 35-37-10 (80) 5.0%

10. St Louis Blues, 37-38-7 (81) – 3.5%

11 Vancouver Canucks, 38-37-7 (83) – 3.0%

Who are the top prospects in the 2023 NHL Draft?

Connor Bedard – The 17-year-old Regina Pats forward led the WHL with 71 goals and 143 points in 57 regular-season games. At the 2023 World Juniors, Bedard set the record for most career points by a Canadian (36) and most career goals by a Canadian (17).

Adam Fantilli – The Michigan freshman was honored with the Hobey Baker Memorial Award for the best player in American college hockey. Fantilli led the NCAA in points (65) and goals (30) and was fifth in assists (35) in 36 games.

Matvey Mikkov – The Russian star was once an early contender to threaten Connor Bedard for first overall. He scored 70 goals at Russia U-16 level and in his season as a 16-year-old at U-20 level he set a record for most goals by 16-year-olds at MHL level with 38 goals and 56 points. After splitting time between the MHL and the KHL that season, Michkov scored 13 postseason goals, including the league title.

Leo Karlson – The 18-year-old center has 10 goals and 15 assists in 44 regular-season games for Örebro HK in the Swedish Hockey League. A powerful playmaker and puck carrier, Carlsson helped Sweden win gold at the 2022 U18 World Cup.

When is the 2023 NHL Draft?

Find out where all of the above prospects will end up during the 2023 NHL Draft on Wednesday, June 28th. It takes place at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee.


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