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The Oilers Are Going To Win The Lottery Tonight...Probably

In a sad tradition, we once again examine the odds of the Oilers winning the NHL Draft Lottery.


For the last few years, I've been carrying on a rather pathetic annual tradition of forecasting the draft lottery by looking at the historical data to see which team may be a surprise winner of the top pick.

Of course, this is all just for fun as the odds for each and every lottery are independent from the results of previous years, (I repeat...THIS IS A JOKE) but the first year I did it, I managed to call the Oilers' victory. Last year, the Avalanche beat the odds by coming out on top.

Well, this year, by finishing 28th overall and slotting in the #3 spot, the Oilers find themselves in a rather prime position once again...let's take a look:

To recap:

x = % chance of winning the lottery

y = 1-x

z = Number of years since last lottery win (including this year)

probability of the event NOT happening = y^z (^ = to the power of)

So, for all of the draft positions tonight, here are the odds of their number NOT being called again this year:


There you have it folks, the Oilers victory over the Canucks on Ryan Smyth Night pushed them up to 28th place and put them in the drivers' seat in terms of the lottery tonight. So, go out and put lots of money down on the Oilers coming out on top again tonight**.

Sadly, this "logic" also points to decent odds that the Canucks and Flames could come out on top...which is decidedly less fun to think about.

We're just hours away from knowing if the Oilers will have the #1, #3 or #4 pick in the draft this June, though we'll need to get a little closer to the actual date before we find out if they intend to use it themselves if they finally decide to put the present before the future and use it in a trade to improve the current roster.

Get excited Oiler fans...this is our Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final. (That sentence makes me sad).

** - Please don't actually do that...if you do, you've likely got a problem and should seek professional help.