Is Michigan hockey star Owen Power in Detroit Red Wings’ future? Answer comes tonight

Detroit Free Press

The Detroit Red Wings should know shortly after 7 p.m. Wednesday whether their rebuild will receive  a huge boost.

That’s when the NHL draft lottery will be conducted, with 16 teams vying for a chance to call out the first name at the virtual event July 23. Michigan defenseman Owen Power, who is currently playing for Canada at the IIHF World Championship in Latvia, is projected to be the first overall pick.

The Wings have a 7.6% chance of getting the first pick. Their 19-27-10 record was fifth-worst in the final standings, but they were bumped back one spot because expansion Seattle automatically slotted into the third-best odds, at 10.3%.

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The Buffalo Sabres have the best odds at 16.6%.

The Wings have been pushed back by the lottery four straight years. In 2017, the year their 25-season playoff streak ended, they were bumped from seventh-worst record to the ninth pick, and drafted forward Michael Rasmussen. In 2018, they were bumped from fifth to sixth, and drafted forward Filip Zadina. In 2019, the Wings were bumped from fourth to sixth. That was Steve Yzerman’s first draft since being named general manager, and he selected defenseman Moritz Seider.

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Then came the travesty that was the 2020 draft lottery. When the Wings lost to the Carolina Hurricanes March 10, it guaranteed the Wings would finish in last place. When the NHL suspended the season March 12 because of the pandemic, the Wings (17-49-5) were the only team mathematically eliminated from the playoffs. Their 39 points were 23 fewer than 30th-place Ottawa.

With the season incomplete, the NHL decided to include the eight teams that emerged from the play-in round in the draft lottery, creating a scenario in which the New York Rangers went from the playoff bubble to the first overall pick. The Wings were bumped to fourth, leaving Yzerman to seethe.

“Anything I say is going to be self-serving,” he said when the first phase of the 2020 lottery was held last June.

Yzerman used the pick on forward Lucas Raymond.

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The Wings have a 15.4% chance to pick in the top two. They cannot pick third, fourth or fifth. They have 30% odds to pick sixth, 43.8% odds to pick seventh and 10.9% odds to pick eighth, which is the latest they can pick.

Chances are …

The odds for //the No. 1 pick// first lottery draw are as follows:

1. Buffalo Sabres, 16.6%

2. Anaheim Ducks, 12.1%

3. Seattle Kraken, 10.3%

4. New Jersey Devils, 10.3%

5. Columbus Blue Jackets, 8.5%

6. Detroit Red Wings, 7.6%

7. San Jose Sharks, 6.7%;

8. Los Angeles Kings, 5.8%

9. Vancouver Canucks, 5.4%

10. Ottawa Senators, 4.5%

11. Arizona Coyotes, 3.1%

12. Chicago Blackhawks, 2.7%

13. Calgary Flames, 2.2%

14. Philadelphia Flyers, 1.8%

15. Dallas Stars, 1.4%

16. New York Rangers, 1.0%

Contact Helene St. James at Follow her on Twitter @helenestjames. Read more on the Detroit Red Wings and sign up for our Red Wings newsletter. Her book, The Big 50: The Detroit Red Wings is available from AmazonBarnes & Noble and Triumph Books. Personalized copies available via her e-mail. 

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