New York Rangers rebuild starts with Draft Lottery
Photo by Andy Marlin/Getty Images for NHL

The New York Rangers are hoping to get lucky in the NHL Lottery selection and land a top-three pick in the 2018 NHL Draft on Saturday in Toronto.

The New York Rangers have been using the word “rebuild” since early February. Saturday, the rebuilding process continues as the NHL Draft Lottery to determine who will get the number pick in NHL draft in June will be held.

The lottery was created to prevent teams from tanking late in a losing season and getting the number one pick in the draft.

The Rangers traded away some of their top players (Michael Grabner, Rick Nash, Ryan McDonagh and J.T. Miller) late in the season for high draft picks with the hope of improving their team.

The lottery will have a big impact on what the direction the franchise takes in rebuilding. The Rangers need to improve on both offense and defense as they struggled scoring goals and defending their own end of the ice last season.

The Sporting News put out a list of the teams, their point totals for last season the chances of getting the number one pick and the chances of getting a top three pick for all 14 teams involved in this years Draft Lottery.

TeamPointsOdds Of No. 1 PickOdds Of Top Three Pick
Buffalo Sabres62 points18.5%49.4%
Ottawa Senators67 points13.5%38.8%
Arizona Coyotes70 points11.5%33.9%
Montreal Canadiens71 points9.5%28.8%
Detroit Red Wings73 points8.5%26.1%
Vancouver Canucks73 points7.5%23.3%
Chicago Blackhawks76 points6.5%20.1%
New York Rangers77 points6.0%19.0%
Edmonton Oilers78 points5.0%16.0%
New York Islanders80 points3.5%11.4%
Carolina Hurricanes83 points3.0%9.9%
New York Islanders via Calgary84 points2.5%8.2%
Dallas Stars92 points2.0%6.6%
Philadelphia Flyers via St. Louis94 points1.5%5.0%
Florida Panthers96 points1.0%3.3%

The Buffalo Sabres (18.5 percent) and Ottawa Senators (13.5 percent) have the best chance of getting the first pick in this year’s draft.

The Rangers only have a six percent chance of acquiring the number one overall pick and the New York Islanders, who will have two opportunities to get the number one pick due to a trade with the Calgary Flames, have a 3.5 percent chance to get the top pick.

Teams that qualified for the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs are not included in the Lottery Draft. They will take their spot in the draft as they are eliminated from the playoffs, hence the New Jersey Devils are not included in the above list.

The presumptive first pick in this years draft is Rasmus Dahlin. The 18-year-old defenseman is currently playing for Frolunda HC in the Swedish Elite League. He’s a smart two-way player with great stick-handling skills who can play in any situation.

The odds of the Rangers getting the first pick overall are low, but their chances for a top three pick improves to 19 percent. They have 10 picks overall heading into this year’s draft.

General Manager Jeff Gorton will have to make sure none of the picks are wasted opportunities in the effort to improve on what was a poor season.

The Rangers missed the playoffs for the first time in eight seasons and vowed to improve in the offseason as they attempt to get back into the playoffs as early as next season.

Important Upcoming NHL Dates

The NHL Draft Lottery drawing will take place Saturday, April 28 in Toronto, with representatives from all 14 lottery teams in attendance. Fans can watch on NBC Sports Network.

The event is broken down into two segments.

Starting at 7:30 p.m. ET, picks four-to-14 will be announced. The top three picks will be announced during the second intermission of an 8 p.m. ET playoff game that evening.

You can’t make this stuff up!

The Scouting Combine will take place May 27 – June 2 in Buffalo, NY.

The 2018 NHL Entry Draft will take place in Minnesota with the first round on Friday night June 28. Rounds two through seven will proceed the next day, Saturday, June 29.

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A graduate of St. John's University class of '91. I have been a fan of the New York Rangers since the days of Peter Puck. Founder of Ranger Proud, the Facebook page that covers all news, notes, pre /post-game stats, and player quotes. I can be reached at