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Canadiens Analysis

Canadiens Tank Watch: Lottery Odds Decided In Final Games



Montreal Canadiens Draft position

There are just a handful of games left in the NHL’s regular season, and yet we still haven’t determined where the Montreal Canadiens will finish in the standings.

The final few games will all play a major role in deciding what type of NHL Draft Lottery odds the Habs will have once the dust has settled.

Current Situation

The Canadiens are currently 28th, however, they’re just one point behind the Ottawa Senators while also being tied with the Arizona/Salt-Lake City Coyotes.

The Coyotes have won more games in regulation, which means they currently have the advantage in a tiebreaker situation. The Senators also have more regulation wins than the Canadiens.

montreal canadiens standings

Montreal Canadiens Draft Lottery Odds

If the Canadiens were to maintain their 28th overall position, they would have the following odds:

First overall: 8.5 percent.

Second overall: 8.6 percent.

Third overall: 0.3 percent.

Fourth overall: N/A

Fifth overall: 24.5 percent

Sixth overall: 44 percent.

Seventh overall: 14.2 percent.

On that note, there are chances the Canadiens could also finish 26th or 27th, depending on how the Coyotes and Senators play to close out the season. This would reduce their chances of drafting in the top three while improving the odds their pick will end up toward the later part of the top 10.

montreal canadiens draft odds


Remaining Games

The Canadiens will face the Senators on Saturday, followed by back-to-back games against the Detroit Red Wings to close out the season.

While the Senators have gone through yet another disappointing season, a recurring theme in Ottawa, they still go out of their way to push the Canadiens to the limit any time the two teams face each other. It should also be noted that the Senators were victorious in both previous meetings between the clubs, winning 6-2 and 4-1, respectively.

This game may end up being the most important match-up of the season for head coach Martin St-Louis and general manager Kent Hughes.

As for the Red Wings, they may not be a powerhouse team, but they’re desperately attempting to qualify for the playoffs, with their hopes clinging to the last Wildcard Spot in the Eastern Conference. This means the team should be firing on all cylinders once they face the Habs.

The Senators have a much more difficult schedule in the final three games, as they’ll face the Boston Bruins and the New York Rangers, two teams that have Stanley Cup aspirations.

However, given they have already qualified for the playoffs, there’s a good chance the Bruins and Rangers won’t ice their best lineups against the Senators. The final two games of the year usually involve several top-notch players sitting out to avoid a potential injury.

The Coyotes have to face the Edmonton Oilers twice, as well as the struggling Calgary Flames. It’s hard to get a read on how those games will be played, but we should note the Coyotes have the best record in the last 10 games among the three teams we’re currently evaluating.

Brass Tacks

The Montreal Canadiens are guaranteed to pick in the top 10 at the 2024 NHL Entry Draft, but the final games of the year will go a long way in establishing whether they’ll have an opportunity to put their hands on one of the best available players.

While Macklin Celebrini is expected to be drafted first overall, there will still be a bevy of talented prospects available, including several high-end forwards who have the potential to become impact players.

With a little luck, they can improve their Draft Lottery odds in the last three games of the season, a season that happens to be the last in which fans and management expect to rely on the draft to improve the long-term outlook of the rebuild.

All Montreal Canadiens schedule information and draft odds are via Tankathon.