Photo courtesy of the NHL
The wait continues to see which pick the Colorado Avalanche will receive in the 2020 NHL Draft.
But for now, New York Rangers fans who were upset following the team being swept by the Carolina Hurricanes in the Stanley Cup qualifying round a week ago can rejoice in knowing the Rangers have secured the rights to select the league's No. 1 overall draft pick in October.
New York won the top prize during the second phase of the NHL draft lottery last night. The Rangers, who were among eight teams eliminated from the Stanley Cup qualifiers this past week, finished 18th overall (of 31 teams) in the league standings.
Each team that was eliminated from the qualifying round had a 12.5% chance of winning the top overall pick. Picks were determined by the drawing of eight lotto balls with the logo of each organization eligible for the second phase of the draft lottery. The teams eligible were: The Rangers, the Panthers, Edmonton Oilers, Minnesota Wild, Nashville Predators, Pittsburgh Penguins, Toronto Maple Leafs and Winnipeg Jets.
The presumptive No. 1 overall pick this fall is Alexis Lafreniere, a 6-foot-1 Canadian forward who will turn 19 years old in October. Lafreniere has been playing for Rimouski Océanic in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League the past three years. He skated in 52 games in the 2019-20 season, recording 35 goals and 77 assists.
The first phase of the draft lottery was held in late June, which revealed the teams picking two through eight. Picks 16 through 31 will go to the teams playing in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, which include the Avalanche.
The Avs are the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference bracket heading into the quarterfinal round. The Vegas Golden Knights received the top slot in the conference after defeating Colorado 4-3 in an overtime round-robin matchup on Aug. 8. The Avs start a best-of-seven series against the No. 7 seed Arizona Coyotes tomorrow.
The draft is scheduled for Oct. 9-10. It was originally slated to take place in Montreal in late June but was postponed due to the league-wide shutdown stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The 2020 NHL Draft order thus far is:
1) New York Rangers
2) Los Angeles Kings
3) Ottawa Senators (from San Jose Sharks)
4) Detroit Red Wings
5) Ottawa Senators
6) Anaheim Ducks
7) New Jersey Devils
8) Buffalo Sabres
9) Minnesota Wild
10) Winnipeg Jets
11) Nashville Predators
12) Florida Panthers
13) Carolina Hurricanes (from Toronto Maple Leafs)
14) Edmonton Oilers
15) Pittsburgh Penguins
Check the Colorado Hockey Hub for more draft coverage and follow @CoAmateurHockey on Twitter.
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