For many fans, the silver lining in a disappointing Montreal Canadiens season will be a high pick in the upcoming NHL Entry Draft.
And despite winning it last year, the Canadiens are again in the running to win the draft lottery, which will occur on May 8. No matter which team wins the coveted position, this year’s winner will undoubtedly select 17-year-old Connor Bedard, a generational talent destined to be a franchise-changing player.
So, what exactly are the Habs’ chances at drafting Bedard?
Currently, the Canadiens sit in 28th place in the league’s standings — or fifth last. This gives them an 8.5% chance to select first overall and an 8.8% chance to pick second.
With only two games left in the season, the Habs can fall no lower than 28th in the standings. However, if Montreal wins their next two, and the Philadelphia Flyers (26th) and Arizona Coyotes (27th) lose their remaining games, the Habs could technically finish the season in 26th place. This would bring their odds of obtaining the first overall pick down to 6.5%.
As for more likely lottery winners, the Chicago Blackhawks and Columbus Blue Jackets have 79 games played and 56 points in the bank. The Anaheim Ducks are not far behind with 58 points. So whoever falls to 32nd place will have a 25.5% chance of winning the lottery. The odds for the team in 31st place drop down to 13.5%.
Suffice it to say, if there was ever a time to lose, it’s now.