The Bruins locked up a top 3 pick regardless of the Lottery with Toronto’s loss to the Rangers tonight. The Leafs have clinched the 2nd worst record in the league. Now the top 5 teams can draft 1st overall, but the top 6 can get 2nd overall. The bottom 6 teams will be Edmonton, Toronto, Tampa Bay, Florida, Carolina and Columbus/Islanders.
Does the NHL want the 1st overall pick going to Edmonton? I don’t think it really matters as Edmonton will get either the Taylor Hall or Tyler Seguin. It’s more of a question does the NHL want Hall or Seguin in Boston or somewhere else. Hall or Seguin in Edmonton is equally as good or bad for the NHL depending on how you look at it. It’s more likely since Hall seems to be the more sexy name, that the NHL could lean towards not wanting him in Canada (bad for TV) and in a city that is not all that popular.
Remember Sidney Crosby? The Penguins franchise was floundering, ended up with Crosby and the rest is history. Remember the Blackhawks? They were another struggling franchise, had Toews, ended up moving from 5th overall to 1st and selected Patrick Kane. Now they are one of the best teams in the league.
Tampa Bay. It’s hard to see them winning the lottery because they had the 1st overall pick in 2008, selecting Steven Stamkos. They had the 2nd overall pick in 2009 selecting Victor Hedman. Why would the NHL want to give Tampa Bay, of all franchises, a ton of top 2 picks. It’s not like they are in a big market. Plus they had the 1st overall pick in 1998 and the rights to the one in 1999, which wasn’t all that long ago. They also won in a cup recently and have talent with guys like Lecavalier, Malone, St. Louis and Stamkos. Doesn’t seem like a logical choice for the NHL to want this one.
Florida. This is the one if they win will call all the conspiracists. Florida had the rights to 2002 and 2003 1st overall picks. That wasn’t all that long ago. They have one of the smallest fan bases in the NHL and is one the teams people call to be relocated. They have been a bad team for some time ever since Bure left. They have made some questionable moves (Luongo, Jokinen, Bouwmeester) and can’t seem to get there stuff together. I don’t see why the NHL would want a Taylor Hall in one of the smallest markets in the league and in a place where hockey is not a popular sport. Having Hall land in Florida would be awful for the NHL.
Columbus. They already have a guy named Rick Nash, and just drafted Nikita Filatov but who knows where we will end up. The Jackets suck at drafting, and giving them ANOTHER top pick would also be bad for the NHL. Columbus is not a hockey town, and they have already had their chances at top picks and failed aside from Nash.
Carolina. Already got Eric Staal, and have some decent players. They aren’t that bad, winning a cup recently and making the playoffs last season. Carolina also is not a big hockey market, although bigger than Tampa and Miami.
Islanders. Just picked Tavares 1st overall, and have Okposo and Bailey developing. Not a chance they get 1 consecutive 1st overall picks.
The best situation for the NHL is for either Edmonton or Toronto (Boston) to win the lottery. Having any of the other 4 teams win would be bad, as there are no other big market teams in the lottery. Taylor Hall in Florida or anywhere else down south would be bad business.