Chasing the Draft – Happy New Year Edition

By Bob Trask – With the calendar year coming to a close it’s time to update and review my projected draft order for the 2023 entry draft. A tough week for the Habs along with including the remaining strength of schedule into the calculation sees the Canadiens rising to #4 overall in the projected draft order. That increases their odds of choosing 1st overall to 9.5% and 2nd overall to 9.8%. Florida comes in at #7 in this edition of the draft projection and that puts Montreal’s odds of choosing 1st overall with that pick at 3.5% and 2nd overall at 3.8%.

Should the draft order remain the same, Montreal would have a greater than 25% chance of drafting 1st or 2nd overall. For the sake of brevity this week, I have shortened the table this week.

1Chicago Black Hawks47.0
2Columbus Blue Jackets55.8
3Anaheim Ducks56.1
4Montreal Canadiens65.3
5San Jose Sharks66.4
6Philadelphia Flyers72.6
7Florida Panthers (Montreal Canadiens own this pick)74.5
8Arizona Coyotes78.7
9Vancouver Canucks80.8
10Ottawa Senators81.5
11Nashville Predators81.6
12Detroit Red Wings83.6
13St Louis Blues84.1
14Edmonton Oilers (currently a wildcard team – not lottery eligible)91.3
15Seattle Kraken91.3
16New York Islanders (currently a wildcard team – not lottery eligible)91.5
17New York Rangers93.7
18Calgary Flames (currently a playoff team – not lottery eligible)94.7
19Buffalo Sabres (currently not a wildcard team – lottery eligible)94.8

I recently published a list of players who could be available at #5 overall. Given the change in the projected draft order that has the Canadiens at #4 overall, the potential to draft a high quality NHL player increases.

Adding a 1st Round Pick

Many fans have been hoping that Kent Hughes can add one more 1st round pick with a pre-deadline trade but given the lacklustre performance of veterans who could be on the trade block, it is hard to see that happening. We may have to content ourselves with the two 1st round picks that the team already has.

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