Lottery win for IceDogs
Random chance worked in favour of the Niagara IceDogs Wednesday night at the 2021 Ontario Hockey League Priority Selection draft lottery.
The IceDogs, who forfeited their first-round selection at part of a penalty for a player recruitment violation in 2018, will select third and fourth in the second round based on the random lottery selections. The picks were from the Oshawa Generals via the Kitchener Rangers and Peterborough Petes via the London Knights as parts of the Phil Tomasino and Akil Thomas trades, respectively. The IceDogs did not have their own selection in the second round, having traded it in a previous deal.
Teams participating in the first round had an equal chance of securing the first overall pick, with the order of selection determined by a computerized random number generator lottery process and overseen by a legal representative.
The IceDogs were included in the lottery process in order to determine the order of selection for subsequent rounds and through the random generation of numbers were designated with the 15th position in the first round.
“It’s a great scenario for us,” IceDogs general manager Joey Burke said. “The way we got set up in the second round is great.
“It couldn’t have worked out better for us.”
Burke feels the IceDogs will be able to add impact players selecting 22nd and 23rd overall.
“To pick back-to-back is a dream scenario,” he said. “We’ve got a target of guys that we don’t have a doubt in our minds they’ll be first-round calibre guys.
“It’s a great, deep group. We love the range these guys are in and we’re ready to go now.”
Burke indicted the IceDogs aren’t necessarily targeting any specific position.
“We like our forwards, like our D and like our goalies, so it really becomes best player available and we’re fortunate because we get two of them in a row.”
The IceDogs have 16 selections overall and seven in the top five rounds.
Unlike past years, this year’s OHL Draft will see teams select in an altered arrangement, with the order of selection in the first round being reversed to begin Round 2 and alternating each round thereafter.
The draft will be held over the course of two days, with rounds 1-3 being held on Friday, June 4 beginning at 7 p.m. Rounds 4-15 will take place on Saturday, June 5 beginning at 9 a.m.
The Sudbury Wolves will select first overall followed by the Oshawa Generals, Guelph Storm, Windsor Spitfires, Kingston Frontenacs, Peterborough Petes, Flint Firebirds, Owen Sound Attack, Mississauga Steelheads, Erie Otters, North Bay Battalion, Ottawa 67’s, Sarnia Sting, Hamilton Bulldogs, Saginaw Spirit, London Knights, Kitchener Rangers, Soo Greyhounds and Barrie Colts.
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