There’s an interesting question coming out of the
farce process that was the draft lottery this weekend… Now that teams who stood good chances of making the No. 1 overall selection at this year’s NHL Entry Draft are no longer in the running, will they be more apt to trade their picks?
As Brian Burke said after a play-in team won the right to draft first overall, “This makes no sense. It should’ve been just the seven teams that weren’t in the play-in round in the lottery. Give the teams who need the most help the best players.” Still, teams are going to have to deal with where they sit now, specifically a team like the Ottawa Senators.
Ottawa had the best-combined odds to draft the top choice. Instead, they’ll pick at the No. 3 and No. 5. spots. Should they consider moving those picks knowing there’s no way Alexis Lafreniere falls to them?
Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun says that Senators GM Pierre Dorion noted that the team will listen to trade offers but he’s 99.9 percent certain that they will keep those picks.
That said, this is a deep draft. Would the Senators consider moving down? If they did, perhaps they can pick up a good player and acquire a roster player that can help them now. Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman suggests Dorion is cool to that idea as well, indicating it would have to be “a special player coming our way” to make that happen.
Friedman writes in his latest 31 Thoughts column:
He did add that a GM listens to everything, and didn’t pooh-pooh Jeff Marek’s query about drafting a goalie in a high spot. One viewer asked if he would offer three and five for No. 1, to which Dorion smiled and said: “No comment.”
What Kind of Trade Would Interest Ottawa?
Friedman suggested that Ottawa has its first-round broken into different tiers. Dorion has Lafreniere as the clear top choice. From there, he’s got two players that would go No. 2 and No. 3 in their mind. The order gets a little foggy between spots four through 12 but has players slotted in those positions. Finally, he’s got another cluster that falls to spots 13 to 20.
If accurate, that means trading down for Ottawa is a no-go unless they can stay inside the first twelve spots and they likely have no reason to trade from the No. 3 spot to move up one.
So, a trade is possible now that Lafreniere isn’t in the equation, but something big would need to happen for that trade to take place.