5 Ways To “Fix” NHL Draft Lottery System That Make It Much More Fun

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images) /
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“The Gold Plan”

This is where things start to get fun. The Gold Plan has been around for a while. Sean McIndoe wrote about it for TSN back in 2016 after Shane Doan mentioned its possibility. Basically, the rule states that the winner of the number-one overall pick, and every pick following this, would be determined by how many points a team accrues after they are eliminated from the playoffs.

The idea is that the worst teams in the league would still have the best chance to get a number-one overall pick because they would be eliminated first. However, this plan does lean on the quality of the division a little too much.

There are some very cool parts of the plan. Fans of bad teams have a reason to root for wins again. The teams pushing for a playoff spot and miss won’t really have much of a chance to get the best player in the draft. While flawed, there are a lot of very good things about this plan.

Looking back, one Reddit user looked at who would win the top picks based on this plan. Spoiler alert, it’s bad for the Devils. Some of the highlights include the Flyers ending up with Nathan MacKinnon, the Atlanta Thrashers would have ended up with John Tavares, and the Edmonton Oilers would have been the winners of the Connor McDavid sweepstakes. So, he was destined to be there it appears.

The Devils would have ended up with players like Lawson Crowse, Michael Rasmussen, and Michael McLeod based on this plan (if they kept the same pick). It’s not a good spot to be in. This is a plan that is specifically looking to target tanking. It’s a little overblown, but it does give a reason for the media to cover the bottom of the standings.