January 9, 2013; New York, NY, USA; Boston Bruins owner and governor and chairman of the NHL board of governors Jeremy M. Jacobs addresses the National Hockey League lockout during a press conference at the Westin New York in Times Square. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

National Hockey League modifies its NHL Entry Draft Lottery

Last season the National Hockey League revamped their conferences and divisions in order to streamline parts of the game. For the most part their efforts were successful. Going into next season, the league has chosen to update its system for the draft lottery.The changes will be implemented over the next to years in an effort to bring a bit more balance to the draft.

The first year’s changes revolve around percentages. The teams that finish in the bottom half of the season in points will have slightly improved odds of  winning the coveted first pick while those at the very Buffalo at the point total (I meant to say bottom there), will have their odds reduced. In this year’s draft, being dead last earned you a twenty five percent chance of winning the lottery. Under the new system, their chances now drop to twenty percent. The lowest four teams will have their odds reduced while the other ten find their odds improving.

“The National Hockey League announced today changes to its Draft Lottery a weighted system implemented and utilized to determine the order of selection in the first round of the NHL Draft for the 14 Clubs not qualifying for the Stanley Cup Playoffs (or the Clubs that have acquired the first-round drafting positions of those non-playoff teams).” – Statement from NHL.com

The new percentages can be found here.

The changes that affect the 2016 Entry Draft revolve mainly around adding a few more lottery picks to the selection process. There will now be three seperate lottery drafts, one for each of the top three picks. Where the last placed team usually ended up with the first or second pick, they could find their pick selection dropping down to fourth.  Overall, it does bring a bit more balance to the draft selection process. The odds of another run of first picks like the Edmonton Oilers (2010-2012) will be significantly reduced.

How does this affect a team like the Boston Bruins? (The last time the Bruins had the first overall pick was in 1997 when the selected Joe Thornton.)  Not much really, for a team that’s having one of the better playoff streaks at the moment. The only way this could affect the Black and Gold is if things took a drastic turn for the worse in Boston. Since we’ve got Cam Neely and Peter Chiarelli minding the front office, and Claude Julien as our bench boss that won’t happen any time soon.

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