The NHL changed their draft lottery rules with the new CBA, and with talk of tanking (sadly) already popping up, I thought this would be a good chance to make sure everyone understands just how the new lottery rules would affect the Buffalo Sabres 2013 draft.
The biggest change for the upcoming draft is that every non-playoff team will have a chance to land the #1 overall pick. Gone is the move-4 rule and the limitation of the top pick going to just the five worst teams. Now, any team finishing #9-15 in the conference will have a chance to move up to #1.
However, that doesn't mean that the Sabres of last season would have had just as good a chance of landing #1 as Edmonton or Montreal - the system will be weighted so that the worst teams will still have the best chance to pick first, but it's still a significant change.
Once the top pick is settled, the order of #2-14 will be determined by regular season record, so if you don't win the lottery, your team would be slotted exactly here they would have been under the old rules. Of course, make the playoffs and all this is moot.
So, there you have it. If you're going to seriously talk about tanking (and really, please wait a few more weeks until we pack it in for the season) now you can make sure you're playing by the new rules of the CBA.