No lottery luck: Red Wings stay put, get eighth pick in NHL Entry Draft

Detroit News

Detroit — There were no surprises for the Red Wings in Tuesday’s annual draft lottery.

The Wings had the eighth-best odds going into the event, and came out with the eighth overall selection.

Entering the evening, the Wings had a 54.4% of getting the eighth pick. There was a 30% chance of falling back to ninth and 3.2% of dropping to 10th.

The Wings had a 6% chance of winning lottery and securing the first overall pick, and had a 6.4% of landing the second overall pick.

The Montreal Canadiens, who will host the NHL Entry Draft, secured the first overall pick, winning Tuesday’s lottery. The New Jersey Devils were the big winners of the evening, moving up from the fifth-best odds (8.5%) to grab the second overall selection.

Rounding out the top seven spots ahead of the Red Wings are Arizona (third), Seattle (fourth), Philadelphia (fifth), Columbus (sixth, by way of Chicago), and Ottawa (seventh).

More: Wojo: Tigers, Red Wings discover nasty little secret about rebuilds

There’s more than a month to go before the draft, and movement is sure to take place, but there appears to be a general consensus among the top three players.

Kingston center Shane Wright is projected by many draft analysts to be the first pick. Wright (6-foot, 191 pounds) was eighth in the Ontario Hockey League with 94 points (32 goals, 62 assists) in 63 games.

Wright, who has been the projected top player in this class for several years, is the top-rated North American player by NHL Central Scouting, with Logan Cooley ranked second.

Cooley (5-10, 174 pounds), of the Plymouth Township-based USA National Team Development Program, was second on the NTDP with 75 points (27 goals, 48 assists) in 51 games.

Left wing Juraj Slafkovsky, of TPS of Liiga (Finland), is No. 1 among international skaters. Slafkovsky (6-3, 218 pounds) was the most valuable player at the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics. He had seven goals in seven games to lead Slovakia to the bronze medal despite being the youngest player (age 17 at the time) in the Olympics.

This will be the sixth consecutive year the Wings, in a rebuild of their organization, will be drafting in the top 10 picks.

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Given the new rules for the draft lottery, no team can move up more than 10 spots. The Wings could only pick first, second, eighth, ninth or 10th.

The lottery hasn’t been kind to the Wings in recent years, although they’ve done well despite dropping on lottery night.

In 2017, they dropped from seventh (position going in) to the ninth pick, and from fifth to sixth in 2018. In 2019, they dropped from fourth to sixth, eventually selecting defenseman Moritz Seider with that pick, this season’s likely NHL rookie of the year.

In 2020, the Wings had the NHL’s worst record but dropped from first to fourth. Although, again, they picked forward Lucas Raymond with the fourth pick, another probable rookie of the year finalist.

The Wings held firm at sixth in 2021 and selected defenseman Simon Edvinsson, who is expected to be in the lineup next season.

So, who are some names that could be available for the Wings at No. 8?

In the NHL Central Scouting’s final draft rankings last week, among North American skaters: Kevin Korchinski, a 6-2, 185-pound defenseman from Seattle (WHL), was ranked seventh; Luca Del Bel Belluz, a 6-foot, 175-pound center from Mississauga (OHL), was eighth; Isaac Howard, a 5-10, 182-pound left wing from USNTDP, was ninth; and Owen Beck, a 6-foot, 185-pound center from Mississauga (OHL), was ranked 10th.

Among European skaters: Czech Republic defenseman David Jiricek (6-3, 190) was fourth; center Marco Kasper (6-1, 183), from Rogle (Sweden), was fifth; right wing Jonathan Lekkerimaki (5-10, 165) from Djurgarden (Sweden), was sixth; and right wing Danila Yurov (6-1, 178) from Magnitogorsk (Russia), was seventh.

The NHL Entry Draft is July 7 (first round) and 8 (Rounds 2-7) in Montreal.

Twitter: @tkulfan 

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