The NHL’s annual draft lottery will take place on May 7

Ryan Pike
3 hours ago
So you’re saying there’s a chance?
The Calgary Flames have a 5% chance of drafting first overall. And a slightly better chance at drafting second overall. Their first-round draft fate will be revealed on May 7, as the National Hockey League hosts its annual draft lottery. (The time of the lottery draw has yet to be locked in.)
In the annual event, the 16 teams that missed the Stanley Cup playoffs are assigned various combinations of numbers, and those numbers are written on ping-pong balls, assigned in 1,000 different four-number combinations and given to the teams to correspond to their odds of winning the draw.
Two draws are conducted, with teams able to move up by a maximum of 10 spots – so only the the first 11 teams in the draft lottery order have a shot at drafting first overall.
TeamOdds1st Odds
San Jose18.5%25.5%
New Jersey3.5%3.5%
St. Louis0.5%0.0%
In other words, there are two chances for the Flames to move up, move down, or stay put. For the first draw, they have a 5% chance to jump up to first overall, a combined 13% chance of moving down to 10th overall, and an 82% chance of staying at ninth overall.
Via Wikipedia, here’s their overall odds of selecting at various spots after the two draws are conducted:
  • 1st overall: 5.0%
  • 2nd overall: 5.2%
  • 3rd overall: 0.2%
  • 9th overall: 64.4%
  • 10th overall: 23.5%
  • 11th overall: 0.9%
(I believe the 3rd overall scenario would have to involve the 13th team winning the lottery, moving up 11 spots to 2nd overall, and then the Flames winning the draw for 2nd overall and being pushed down to 3rd overall.)
Nevertheless, the Flames have a chance to move up, but not a huge one, and the odds suggest that they’ll stay put at 9th overall. In the club’s history, they’ve never won a lottery draw. Perhaps their fortunes will change on May 7.
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