Yesterday the NHL held it’s draft lottery to determine the top 15 in June’s NHL draft. The Detroit Red Wings found themselves as a participant for the first time ever since the lottery was brought to the NHL in 1995. The Red Wings had 6.7 odds to obtain the number one pick and projected by some to have the 7th pick, however the Wings dropped two spots from where they were. Detroit obtained the 9th pick in June’s draft.
The order is set and now Detroit has work to do. This will be the first time since 1991 that the Red Wings will be picking in the top ten of the draft. That year they selected Martin Lapointe at 10th overall. This year’s draft class isn’t considered a strong draft at all from a talent stand point. This is where the team will really have to do their homework on a few potential players at 9. Detroit won’t find any quick fixes in this draft and should expect a quick fix, it’s all about scouting and properly developing that player.
So who will the Red Wings take at 9? There are two key positional needs in the system Detroit could address. They could take a look at center or defenseman, which has been a glaring hole since the retirement of Lidstrom. One player that comes to mind is Tomothy Lijegren out of Sweden. There are some mock drafts that have the Swedish defenseman falling to the Red Wings at 9 which could be a pretty good gain for them. Scouts say he displays good hockey IQ and is a great skater, however his physical attributes contributes to him slipping in some mocks.
Between now and June 23rd we can only speculate on what the Red Wings do. They have a number of things that Detroit could do at 9. As for the rest of the NHL, The New Jersey Devils will have the number one pick in this year’s draft. The Vegas Golden Knights, who had 10.3 odds at the top pick, dropped to 6th in the upcoming draft.
The 2017 NHL Draft will take place June 23rd and 24th at the United Center in Chicago, Illinois