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NHL Draft

BREAKING: Penguins Stay Put; San Jose Hits Draft Jackpot

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Bill Daly

The Pittsburgh Penguins came out of the NHL draft lottery Tuesday evening with the 14th choice in Round 1 this summer.

Which means they likely no longer have a selection in the opening round.

Because the Penguins didn’t move into the top 10 in the draft order, their top pick will go to San Jose, as a condition of the Erik Karlsson trade last summer.

Kyle Dubas, the Penguins’ president of hockey operations and general manager, had taken the precaution of making the No. 1 he sent to the Sharks “top-10 protected.” Had the Penguins moved into the top 10 — they could have gone to fourth if they’d won the lottery — they could have opted to give that first-rounder to San Jose in 2025 instead of this year.

The Pittsburgh Penguins still can get a choice in Round 1 if Carolina reaches the Stanley Cup final, part of the return from the Hurricanes in the Jake Guentzel trade. If Carolina is eliminated before that, the pick will be in the second round.

The big winner of the evening was San Jose, which entered the lottery with the best odds of winning it and actually did so.

Chicago also had a productive evening, locking up the No. 2 pick in the first round just a year after winning the lottery and securing the rights to generational talent Connor Bedard.

Boston University center Macklin Celebrini is almost universally expected to be the first player chosen in the draft, which is scheduled for June 28-29 in Las Vegas.

Here is the order of selection that’s been established for the first 16 selections in the draft:
1. San Jose.
2. Chicago.
3. Anaheim.
4. Columbus.
5. Montreal.
6. Utah (formerly, Arizona).
7. Ottawa.
8. Seattle.
9. Calgary.
10. New Jersey.
11. Buffalo.
12. Philadelphia.
13. Minnesota.
14. Penguins.
15. Detroit.
16. St. Louis.