DETROIT – The last time the Detroit Red Wings selected a player 1st overall was in 1986.
Joe Murphy was the first pick in the 1986 NHL Entry Draft. The Red Wings got that pick thanks to their league-worst 17 wins in the 1985-86 season.
This year the Red Wings finished with the 5th-worst record in the NHL, giving them an 8.5 percent chance of landing the top pick in the NHL Draft Lottery -- something that didn't exist way back in 1986.
In last year's Draft Lottery, the New Jersey Devils won the first pick -- they had an 8.5 percent chance of winning it. The Devils leaped from 5th position to 1st thanks to the drawing. In 2015, the Edmonton Oilers jumped from 3rd to 1st.
Here are the 1st pick odds for the 15 bottom teams this year:
These odds are for the first draw only and will change accordingly for each following draw.
The 12 clubs not selected in the 2018 NHL Draft Lottery will be assigned 2018 NHL Draft selections 4 through 15, in inverse order of regular-season points.
That means the Red Wings are guaranteed a top-10 pick. They also own a 34.5 percent chance of landing the 6th overall pick.
The lottery is Saturday night.
The actual 2018 NHL Entry Draft will be June 22–23 at American Airlines Center in Dallas
What does the 1st pick even get you?
DraftSite.com offers NHL mock drafts. Right now the site lists these 10 players in the top 10 for the 2018 draft:
That's a lot of high-ranked defenseman up for grabs including top-pick Rasmus Dahlin. Elite Hockey Prospects describes Dahlin as follows:
"Dahlin is a smart two-way defenseman who can play in any situation. He is a terrific skater and stick handler who can rush the puck, or join the attack in a hurry. Impressive agility makes him a good one-on-one defender. He has fine passing ability, and altough not a big-time bomber, he has an accurate shot from the point. Not one to shy away from the physical game, Dahlin is an accomplished open-ice hitter."
He sounds decent.
By the way, Joe Murphy (right wing) played parts of four seasons with Detroit before he was traded to the Edmonton Oilers in what was considered a blockbuster deal at the time to bring Jimmy Carson and Kevin McClelland to the Red Wings.
Murphy played 779 career NHL games, scored 233 goals and 295 assists.
The Red Wings have had just three total first overall picks in the draft since its inception in 1964 -- Murphy in 1986, Dale McCourt in 1977 and Claude Gauthier in 1964.