Connect with us

Montreal Canadiens

Technicality In Draft Lottery Rules Give Canadiens Big Advantage



Montreal Canadiens draft odds

The Montreal Canadiens won the 2022 NHL Draft Lottery, but that wouldn’t stop them from winning both lotteries in the 2023 NHL Draft Lottery, should the stars align.

Both the Montreal Canadiens and the Florida Panthers are currently out of a playoff spot as we speak, meaning the Canadiens could have two picks eligible to win the Draft Lottery this spring, should things stay this way.

The twist? The Canadiens could be the first team in NHL history to win two lotteries in the same year, and it would be completely legal.

Yes, the Canadiens may have won the 2022 NHL Draft Lottery, but simply winning a Draft Lottery is not enough to count against the NHL’s new limitations.

The NHL Draft Lottery has some confusing jargon, so we break it down for you below:

Limit on Teams Winning a Lottery Draw

According to the NHL’s new ruleset for the NHL Draft Lottery released on March 23rd, 2021:

No single team will be able to advance in the Draft order by reason of winning a Lottery Draw more than two (2) times in any five (5) year period. This limitation will not affect a Club’s ability to retain its presumptive Draft position in any Draft Lottery, nor would it preclude the possibility of the Club moving down in Draft Order to the extent other Clubs advance by reason of winning the Lottery Draws. For purposes of clarity, the limitation would attach to the team, not the specific pick.”

Here’s where things get technical.

The Montreal Canadiens finished 32nd in the NHL last season and had the best odds of winning the NHL Draft Lottery.

However, despite winning the Draft Lottery for the 1st overall pick, the Canadiens did not “advance in the Draft order by reason of winning a lottery draw”.

In fact, they maintained their position as No. 1, and no movement occurred; meaning the Canadiens can still win the lottery twice over the next five years.

2023 Draft Lottery Implications For Montreal Canadiens

If, by some stroke of luck, the Canadiens had both their own and Florida’s picks win the two lotteries at the 2023 NHL Draft, those picks would be eligible to move up to 10 spots.

As an example, the Canadiens and Panthers currently sit with the 12th and 13th best odds to win the Draft lottery as of today.

Should both picks win the draft lottery at that spot, the Canadiens would be picking 2nd and 3rd overall at the 2023 NHL Draft; with Canadiens fans likely dancing silly for Adam Fantilli.

In this scenario, even though Florida’s pick won the lottery, it would count against the Canadiens’ two lottery advances in five years, as the limitation applies to the current holder of said pick, not the original team.

Should the Canadiens only win one of the two lotteries, they would still be able to win another one down the line (think about Calgary Flames’ 2025 1st round pick for example).