I think we all know about how the Blackhawks won’t have a first-round pick this year, unless they trade for one, or win the lottery. What is the likelihood the latter happens, and if so, who are the top prospects slotted to go in those positions?
First, let’s look at the lottery rules and odds. The lottery rules have changed this for the NHL draft. In previous years, you could win a top 3 pick, even if you had 15th best odds at doing so. When the Blackhawks won the lottery in 2019, they were at 12th best odds, then jumped at to 3rd overall. This year, NHL teams can still win a lottery pick, though it’s top 2, and according to tankathon.com, a team can jump 10 spots at most.
As of January 3, the Blackhawks odds to win 1st overall and 2nd overall is 7.6 and 7.9 percent, respectively. They’re most likely to pick 7th overall with 43% odds, which will go to Columbus. It’s really a bummer, because the top 10 in this 2022 draft class is really stacked.
But let’s be optimistic. Let’s fast forward to the end of the season and to the draft lottery. We’re down to the final two picks and Bill Daly hasn’t flipped over a card with a Blackhawks logo. Whether it’s 1st or 2nd overall, you’re ecstatic as a Blackhawks fan. This franchise will get a player that’ll be a huge part of it for at least a decade.
If it’s 1st overall, it would be Shane Wright. Wright is the unanimous choice to go 1st overall.
Shane Wright, RHC (Kingston Frontenacs, OHL)
GP: 22 | G: 11 | A: 19 | Pts: 30
Bob McKenzie’s September 30th ranking: 1st
A dynamic playmaker with a sniper’s release, there is virtually no easy to stop him - EPRinkside.com
If it’s 2nd overall, it’s a lot more open for debate. Personally, I think it’s Matthew Savoie, though there are other great prospects with high upside.
Matthew Savoie, RHC (Winnipeg Ice, WHL)
GP: 34 | G: 18 | A: 34 | Pts: 52
Bob McKenzie’s September 30th ranking: 7th
Sam Cosentino, Sportsnet - Nov. 3rd: "There’s no denying the puck skills and amazing playmaking ability. The creativity is what will allow him to overcome any issues regarding size (5-foot-9, 178 pounds)."
Brad Lambert, C/RHW (JYP, Liiga)
GP: 24 | G: 2 | A: 4 | Pts: 6
Bob McKenzie’s September 30th ranking: 3rd
Bob McKenzie, TSN - Sept. 30th: "Lambert is a dynamic skater who can be disruptive on the forecheck and a dangerous shooter when he has the puck on his stick. He’s played both centre and wing and the scouts seem somewhat divided on which position he’ll be most effective at in the NHL."
Joakim Kemell, RHW (JYP, Liiga)
GP: 21 | G: 12 | A: 6 | Pts: 18
Bob McKenzie’s September 30th ranking: 9th
Marek Novotny, Dobber Prospects - Sept. 3rd: "He is a very skilled and dangerous winger who possesses a lethal shot and he will definitely fill the net with a lot of pucks. Kemell just wants the puck on his stick so he can be the difference-maker, and rightfully so as he is a very creative and confident player."
Logan Cooley, LHC (USNTDP)
GP: 22 | G: 14 | A: 19 | Pts: 33
Bob McKenzie’s September 30th ranking: 6th
Nick Richard, Dobber Prospects - Sept. 3rd: "Cooley is an intelligent two-way forward who plays a mature game for his age. He reads the play extremely well in all three zones and is committed to his defensive responsibilities, getting involved down low and covering for his defensemen."
David Jiricek, RHD (CZE)
Simon Nemec, RHD (SVK)
Juraj Slafkovsky, LHW (SVK)
Danila Yurov, LHW/RW (RUS)