This terrible, no-good season for the Vancouver Canucks is finally over.
The Canucks completed the shortened 56-game 2020-21 NHL season Wednesday afternoon in Calgary, one that included a devastating COVID-19 outbreak and a whole lot of losing.
With a 23-29-4 record, Vancouver finished dead-last in the North Division, even dropping below the lowly Ottawa Senators. As for the overall standings, the Canucks ranked 24 out of 31 teams.
As the eighth-worst team in the NHL, the Canucks will have the ninth-best odds of winning the NHL draft lottery — as the expansion Seattle Kraken enter the league with the third-best odds.
There are a couple of rule changes to the draft lottery this year. Only the top two picks will be decided by the weighted lottery, and the teams involved are only able to move up a maximum of 10 spots in the order.
The Canucks will have a 5.4% chance to win the first pick, the NHL has confirmed. The Buffalo Sabres have the best odds of winning the lottery, with 16.6% odds, followed by the Anaheim Ducks (12.1%) and Seattle Kraken (10.3%).
Teams will no longer be allowed to win the lottery more than twice in a five-year period — call it the Edmonton Oilers rule — beginning after this year. This year’s draft is expected to be a bit of a crapshoot given so many junior-aged players had their seasons cut short, if not cancelled entirely.
Canadian junior leagues were significantly affected, and consequently, many of the top prospect rankings don’t include a lot of CHL players.
The draft lottery is set for June 2, while the 2021 NHL Draft will be held virtually on July 23-24. Most believe that 6-foot-6 University of Michigan defenceman Owen Power will be the top selection, though Quinn Hughes’ brother Luke — a 6-foot-2 defenceman with the US National Development Program — is also one of the top prospects.
2021 NHL draft lottery odds