Predators don't beat the odds, will have 11th overall pick in draft

The Nashville Predators did not win the NHL draft lottery, which is nothing new.

As a result, they have the 11th overall pick in this year’s draft, which also is nothing new.

Nashville had the 11th choice once in their previous drafts. That was in 2009 and they took defenseman Ryan Ellis. That same draft yielded three other current Predators, right wing Craig Smith and Mattis Ekholm in the fourth round and left wing Gabriel Bourque in the fifth.

The franchise never has improved its position through the lottery but has dropped back a few times, including the first. Nashville fell from second to third in the order in 1998 and was forced to trade with San Jose to get back to No. 2 and draft center David Legwand.

The current format determines which team gets the first overall pick by the following method:

Fourteen balls, numbered 1 to 14, were placed in a lottery machine. The machine expelled four balls, forming a series of numbers. The four-digit series resulting from the expulsion of the balls was matched against a probability chart that divided the possible combinations among the 14 participating clubs.

Nashville's chance to win this year was 1.1 percent.

The Florida Panthers won with the second best chance (18.8 percent), which moved them to the top spot ahead of Buffalo. The Sabres had a 25 percent chance to win. The rest of the top 13 were set based on regular season records and the New Jersey was assigned the 30th overall pick as part of sanctions from the league.

The order for the first 13 picks in this year’s NHL draft:

1. Florida Panthers
2. Buffalo Sabres
3. Edmonton Oilers
4. Calgary Flames
5. New York Islanders
6. Vancouver Canucks
7. Carolina Hurricanes
8. Toronto Maple Leafs
9. Winnipeg Jets
10. Anaheim Ducks (from Ottawa)
11. Nashville Predators
12. Phoenix Coyotes
13. Washington Capitals