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NHL Draft

Penguins’ Draft Lottery Odds, NHL Rules

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The almost-inevitable should become official for the Pittsburgh Penguins this evening.

The NHL is scheduled to conduct its draft lottery shortly after 6:30 p.m., and the Penguins will find precisely where they will be slotted in the 2024 draft order.

They currently are 14th, and have a 1.5 percent chance of winning the lottery (which means they also have a 98.5 percent chance of staying put or dropping).

The significance of this lottery is that the Penguins sent their first-round draft choice to San Jose in the Erik Karlsson trade last summer, but president of hockey operations/GM Kyle Dubas took the precaution of making that pick was “top-1o protected.”

Consequently, if the Pittsburgh Penguins would win the lottery, they would move up to fourth in the draft order (teams cannot advance more than 10 spots), and would have the option of holding onto that selection and sending their first-rounder in 2025 to the Sharks.

Per NHL rules, the lottery consists of two drawings: The first determines the lottery winner, while the second decides which of the other 15 non-playoff clubs gets the No. 2 selection. The advance-10-places limit remains in effect for the second drawing.

Lottery rules stipulate that no team can win the lottery more than twice every five years.

San Jose, which finished last in the overall standings, has the best odds of winning the lottery, 18.5 percent. Chicago is second at 13.5 percent.