Today, the Seattle Kraken won the second of two drawings in the 2021 NHL Draft Lottery and will pick 2nd overall in this year’s NHL Entry Draft. The Buffalo Sabres won the first drawing and will pick 1st overall. The draft will take place on July 23rd and 24th and will be held via video conference call from the NHL Network studios in Seacaucus, New Jersey.
Barring any trades involving the pick, the Kraken would be the first expansion team to pick 2nd overall since 1998, when the Nashville Predators selected David Legwand. The Kraken had a 21.1% chance of picking in the top 2 and a 10.5% chance of ending up with the 2nd pick exactly. Those were tied for the 3rd best odds of any team. Here are the full draft lottery odds:
Picking 2nd overall will be an important jump start for the Kraken, both on and off the ice. In addition to being able to bring in a young player who could contribute right away, the excitement of a top-2 pick and potential franchise player will generate fanfare and help build anticipation for the start of the Kraken’s inaugural season this October. The player Seattle selects will instantly represent the future of the franchise to both newer and longtime hockey fans.
While there is no consensus choice to be the top pick in the draft this year, the frontrunner appears to be University of Michigan defenseman Owen Power. Power was ranked as the top North American skater in NHL Central Scouting’s final rankings for the 2021 NHL Draft. His combination of size (6’6 213lbs) and high end skill have many scouts projecting Power as a top-pairing NHL defenseman. Our resident scout Dylan Travers did a deeper dive into Power’s game here:
In an abnormally uncertain draft year, there will be a number of directions that each team in the top 5 could go with their picks. In addition to Power, Matthew Beniers, Dylan Guenther, Luke Hughes, Simon Edvinsson, and William Eklund are all potentially in play atop the draft board. Who do you think the Kraken should take with the 2nd pick in this year’s draft? Vote in our poll below: