Carolina Beats Philadelphia, Lock in Leafs at 27th

Congratulations everyone, we did it. The tank was a success.

The Maple Leafs are now locked into the 27th overall in the standings – a truly horrible result – after the Carolina Hurricanes defeated the Philadelphia Flyers earlier this evening. The Hurricanes are now four points ahead of the Leafs with 71, and can no longer be caught.

That of course means that, according to this year’s NHL Entry Draft lottery rules, Toronto has the fourth-best chance, with 9.5%, at winning the first overall pick and the opportunity to draft Connor McDavid.

More after the jump…

Now, the sad reality is that it’s still very likely the Leafs pick fifth overall as opposed to fourth. We won’t get any true closure on the matter until the Draft Lottery is complete, but let’s go ahead and break down the odds now that we know them for certain.

  • As previously stated, there’s a 9.5% chance the Leafs win the lottery and pick 1st overall.
  • There’s a 45% chance that a team ahead of the Leafs wins the lottery, and Toronto keeps the 4th overall pick.
  • There’s a 45.5% chance that one of the teams behind the Leafs wins the lottery, and Toronto picks 5th overall.

So, to be optimistic, there’s a 54.5% chance that the Leafs pick either first overall or fourth overall. 

Either way, and even if they do end up picking fifth, the Leafs should pick up an elite-level prospect. Whether it be McDavid with the first pick, or one of Noah Hanifin, Dylan Strome or Mitch Marner with the fourth pick, Toronto could add a franchise cornerstone piece.

  • STAN

    And a very Happy 30th Birthday Dion Phaneuf, soon to be ex-Toronto Maple Leafs.

    Sure, Darryl Sutter was unable to coax his troops into the 2014-15 Stanley Cup playoffs and he was a comically math-challenged GM in Calgary, but his legacy is two Stanley Cups with the LA Kings and jettisoning Mr. Phaneuf when it became clear that his hockey skills were fast eroding and he was anything but a locker room leader.

    Will there be a GM who judges Phaneuf a very competent 4-5 D-man worth about $4M per for the remaining six years of his deal? Certainly.

    It’ll be a miracle if the Leafs don’t have to cover a healthy chunk of Phaneuf’s insane compensation…

    • silentbob

      They might be able to move guys like Phaneuf and Kessel, without retaining salary by taking other teams bad contracts off their hands in the deal.

      If we look at the Red Wings for an example, taking Weiss and/or Franzen off their hands could replace retaining salary.

    • TGT23

      This is ridiculous.

      I can’t wait until Dion is gone so people like you can see just how good he has been for the team.

      4-5? Give me a break. 2-3 is most likely and if he gets a competent partner people like you will be saying “why wasn’t he this good in Toronto! He was just lazy and gave up”.

      The truth you don’t want to face is he WAS good in Toronto, easily the top dman on the team. Your dislike of him or his lack of captain leadership doesn’t change he’s been a very good dman.

      The fact that LA and Detroit are among the teams interested should tell you all you need to know about his talent. But you choose to ignore that.

      Will teams pay him 7? No. Because they don’t HAVE to. Leafs want to trade him. Had Dion gone to FA teams would have given him the exact same contract. But he isn’t a FA and the buying team has all the power.

      Leafs will have to retain salary, not because of Dion but because they have backed themselves into a position of weakness.