We know who the first overall is, but we don’t know where he’s going. Well, okay, he’s going to a loser of a team, but we still don’t know which one.

The first overall pick in the 2020 NHL draft has gone to a placeholder for one of the eight losers of the qualifying round, yet to be played. The eight losers will be turned into one winner in a second lottery to be held during the playoffs, after the qualifying round, but before the Stanley Cup Final. That is, of course, assuming all those things happen. What happens if they don’t happen? No one knows.

Wait, Elliotte Friedman knows:

(Toronto is not one of those teams in that case. They’re marked below with an *.)

But if the games get played, the potential pool of teams to become the eight losers that enter the second lottery are:

  • Pittsburgh Penguins
  • Carolina Hurricanes
  • New York Islanders
  • Columbus Blue Jackets *
  • Florida Panters *
  • New York Rangers *
  • Montreal Canadiens *
  • Edmonton Oilers
  • Nashville Predators
  • Vancouver Canucks
  • Calgary Flames
  • Winnipeg Jets *
  • Minnesota Wild *
  • Arizona Coyotes *
  • Chicago */

Oh, yeah, and the Toronto Maple Leafs.

That’s a long list, and it will take losing three games to get a ticket to the second lottery. The NHL confirmed in their press release that lottery will be a straight draw, so the odds of winning it, once you lose those three games is 12.5% for each team.

If the Leafs were to lose the qualifying round and then lose the second lottery, they would end up with pick 12 at best, which would mean it would go to Carolina, and they’d be big losers twice.

So now you really know the odds of winning by losing vs winning by winning for the Leafs. So have you changed your mind since this morning on cheering for victory or defeat?

Are you cheering for the Leafs to beat Columbus now?

This question is too painful to answer.59
Taylor Hall is in Arizona, so yes, no one else can win the second lottery. 72
I believe in snatching victory from the jaws of defeat!65
We tanked once, and that’s enough.153
Really, this question is painful. 103