NHL Draft lottery set for Apr. 29, all non-playoff teams eligible for No. 1 pick


On Monday, the NHL announced that its annual draft lottery would be held on Monday, Apr. 29 — and that, for the first time in history, all 14 non-playoff teams would have a shot at winning the first overall selection.

Here are the details:

The NHL Draft Lottery is a weighted system to determine the order of selection for the first 14 picks of the 2013 NHL Draft. Teams finishing with the fewest points during the regular season possess the greatest chance of winning the right to the first pick.

Fourteen balls, numbered 1 to 14, are placed in a lottery machine. The machine expels four balls, forming a series of numbers. The four-digit series resulting from the expulsion of the balls is matched against a probability chart that divides the possible combinations among the 14 participating clubs.

While the top pick can now go to any of the 14 non-playoff clubs, or the team owning the rights to the first pick of a non-playoff club, the odds of winning the lottery are unchanged from previous years.

The teams in the drawing are ranked in inverse order of their regular season point totals, with team one being the club with the fewest points, and team 14 being the club with the most points among those outside of the playoffs.

And here are the likelihoods (in percentages) of each team getting the first pick:

Team 1 — 25.0%
Team 2 — 18.8%
Team 3 — 14.2%
Team 4 — 10.7%
Team 5 — 8.1%
Team 6 — 6.2%
Team 7 — 4.7%
Team 8 — 3.6%
Team 9 — 2.7%
Team 10 — 2.1%
Team 11 — 1.5%
Team 12 — 1.1%
Team 13 — 0.8%
Team 14 — 0.5%


— The 2013 NHL Entry Draft will be held on Sunday, July 30 at the Prudential Center in New Jersey starting at 3 p.m. ET.

— No club will move down more than one position as a result of the lottery.

— The remaining first-round positions are determined by Stanley Cup Playoffs results.

Bettman to players: Don’t screw up ‘once-in-a-lifetime opportunity’ with drugs

Gary Bettman
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The NHL wants to take an educational approach — not a punitive one — to deter its players from using illicit drugs like cocaine.

“My interest is not to go around punishing people,” Bettman told Sportsnet today.

“My interest is getting players to understand the consequences of doing something that could jeopardize this great, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that they’ve been given, to play in the NHL.”

While some players have expressed surprise at hearing that cocaine use is growing, the anecdotal evidence of substance abuse has been very much in the news, from Jarret Stoll‘s arrest to Mike Richards’ arrest to, more recently, Zack Kassian‘s placement in the NHL/NHLPA’s treatment program.

“We don’t have the unilateral right to do things here. We need the consent of the Players’ Association,” Bettman said. “It’s not about punishment. It’s about making sure we get it to stop.”

Related: Cocaine in the NHL: A concern, but not a crisis?

Goalie nods: Jones makes Sharks debut against ex-Kings mates

Martin Jones
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News and notes from around the crease…

Jones goes for San Jose

Martin Jones, acquired by the Sharks this summer, will make his first regular-season start for the club tonight against his old team — the Los Angeles Kings.

Jones, 25, spent the last two years in L.A. as Jonathan Quick‘s understudy. He was flipped to Boston at the NHL Entry Draft, then shipped to San Jose. Sharks GM Doug Wilson wasted little time locking Jones in — signing him to a three-year, $9 million extension — and Jones wasted little time locking up the No. 1 gig, putting together a stellar preseason.

For the Kings, Quick will get the start in goal.

Markstrom out for Vancouver

Jacob Markstrom wasn’t scheduled to start for the Canucks tonight — No. 1 Ryan Miller is getting the call — but the Swedish ‘tender won’t even dress when his club takes on the Flames in Calgary.

Markstrom suffered a lower-body injury at practice this week and is being held out of tonight’s action. In his place, the Canucks called up AHL netminder Richard Bachman, who’ll serve as Miller’s backup.

For the Flames, Karri Ramo is the opening-night starter.


Habs at Leafs: Carey Price vs. Jonathan Bernier

Rangers at ‘Hawks: Henrik Lundqvist vs. Corey Crawford