Yes, the San Jose Sharks will have a chance to win the NHL Draft Lottery on May 10 and select center Shane Wright with the first overall pick.
It’s just not a big chance.
Depending on what happens Friday on the final day of the NHL regular season, the Sharks (32-36-13, 77 points) will finish with the league’s 10th or 11th worst record and have 3.5 or 3 .0% wins. the Wright competition.
If the Sharks beat the Seattle Kraken at Climate Pledge Arena, they’ll finish with 79 points and 22nd overall in the NHL, or 11th worst.
If the Sharks lose in regulation, overtime or a shootout, they could slip to 23rd overall. For that to happen, the Anaheim Ducks, now with 76 points, would have to beat the Dallas Stars in regulation time.
The Sharks and Ducks currently have 22 regulation wins, which is the first tiebreaker. The second tiebreaker, however, is wins in regulation or overtime, and the Sharks have a 29-27 advantage in that category.
Still, the odds of winning the draft lottery, whether the Sharks finish 22nd or 23rd overall, aren’t good.
The team with the 10th worst record has a 3.5% chance of winning the first lottery draw, and the team with the 11th worst record has a 3.0% chance.
The Montreal Canadiens are guaranteed to end the regular season with the worst record in the NHL and have an 18.5% chance of winning the first lottery draw. The Arizona Coyotes will have the second worst record in the league and will have a 13.5% chance.
The odds for the remaining teams will increase proportionally for the second lottery draw, depending on which team wins the first lottery draw.
The NHL has changed its rules so that any team that wins the lottery can only move up a maximum of 10 spots. Thus, only the “top 11 seeds,” as defined by the NHL, are eligible to receive the first overall draft selection.
Wright, 18, is widely considered the best player available in this year’s draft. Listed at 6-foot-1, 185 pounds, Wright had 94 points in 63 games with the Kingston Frontenacs of the Ontario Hockey League. In his first four OHL playoff games, he had six points.
Other top prospects include center Logan Cooley of the United States National Under-18 Team Development Program, Slovakian winger Juraj Slafkovsky and Canadian-born center Matthew Savoie of the WHL’s Winnipeg Ice.
The Sharks have drafted in the top 11 twice in the last seven years. They picked winger Timo Meier ninth overall in 2015 and center William Eklund seventh overall last season.
The 2022 NHL Scouting Combine runs May 29 through June 4 in Buffalo. The NHL Draft will take place at the Bell Center in Montreal, with the first round on July 7 and rounds 2-7 on July 8.