The vast majority of Saturday’s focus was on the playoffs, but to some fan bases, the biggest wins came in defeat. The 2012 NHL Entry Draft lottery takes place on Tuesday, so if you want a rundown of the rules, click here. The actual positioning has been determined since then, though, so take a look at the rundown via NHL.com.
Odds of winning the draft lottery (Note: I put teams in the running for the first pick in bold)
1 – Columbus – 25.0%
2 – Edmonton – 18.8%
3 – Montreal – 14.2%
4 – NY Islanders – 10.7%
5 – Toronto – 8.1%
6 – Anaheim – 6.2%
7 – Minnesota – 4.7%
8 – Carolina – 3.6%
9 – Winnipeg – 2.7%
10 – Tampa Bay – 2.1%
11 – Washington (via COL) – 1.5%
12 – Buffalo – 1.1%
13 – Dallas – 0.8%
14 – Calgary – 0.5%
NOTE: No team can move up more than four spots, or move down more than one.
One could argue the most interesting scenario might be if the Washington Capitals’ 11th pick (via Colorado in that Semyon Varlamov trade) jumps all the way to the seventh one. Another interesting possibility might come if the lowly Edmonton Oilers receive a third consecutive first overall pick, which is only slightly less than a one-in-five chance.
Here’s a goofy but fun question to chew on: which of the bottom five teams “deserves” the No. 1 pick the most in your mind? Should the sad sack Blue Jackets get the blue chip to start a post-Rick Nash era? Would it be cool to see the Oilers get a trio of unos? How about giving the new Montreal Canadiens GM a great stuff with a first pick, the Islanders another boost in their rebuild or even the Maple Leafs a chance to shake off the Tyler Seguin talk?
As PHT’s mentioned before, the Florida Panthers stand as a fascinating contrast between youth and experience.
Let’s not kid ourselves, though; fresh faces usually beat out gray beards, at least when it comes to teams that are still trying to build toward contender status.
While it’s by no means official, two Panthers beat writers – the Miami Herald’s George Richards and the Florida Sun-Sentinel’s Harvey Fialkov – report that the Panthers are likely to pass on Martin Havlat.
It wasn’t just about the likes of Jonathan Huberdeau and Nick Bjugstad leading the charge. Other young Panthers (maybe most notably Quinton Howden and Connor Brickley) made the team, thus making Havlat less necessary.
One would assume that it might be tough for the 34-year-old to find work, at least if he insists upon only an NHL deal.
Health issues continue to dog him, but he’s no longer one of those guys who tantalizes with talent when he is healthy enough to play.
Havlat also doesn’t really bring much to the table defensively. While other veterans can kill penalties and show a little more verstaility, Havlat’s greatest selling point is scoring.
Could this be it for a solid career that may nonetheless end with a “What if?” or two?
Considering all of the controversy surrounding the 41-game suspension for Raffi Torres, some might have lost track of the guy who received that hit: Jakob Silfverberg.
The good news is that, at the moment, it seems like he’s OK.
The Anaheim Ducks announced that he skated on his own and will be involved in the team’s next practice:
That falls in line with some of the fall-out from the hit, as head coach Bruce Boudreau let out a relieved “thank goodness” at the young forward seemingly dodging a bullet.
Here’s video of the hit and the suspension decision:
Silfverberg, 24, enjoyed a nice breakout in 2014-15, especially during the playoffs.
Keep in mind that injuries can sometimes crop up later than expected, especially potential head injuries/concussions. Still, it seems like the initial reaction is that the damage was minimal.