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2020 NHL Draft primer: Details, order, top prospects

Rutledge Wood gives a rundown of everything you need to know about the 2020 NHL Draft, including the top prospects to watch.

When is the 2020 NHL Draft?

Round 1 of the NHL Draft will take place Tuesday, Oct. 6 at 7 p.m. ET and air on NBCSN (livestream) and the NBC Sports app. Rounds 2-7 will be held Wednesday, Oct. 7 beginning at 11:30 a.m. ET and air on NHL Network.

Round 1 coverage will begin with a pre-draft edition of NHL Live at 6:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN. Liam McHugh will host from NBC Sports’ studios in Stamford, Conn., alongside Pierre McGuire, while NHL Insiders Bob McKenzie and Craig Button will contribute remotely from a studio in Montreal.

Who’s picking first?

The Rangers won Phase 2 of the 2020 NHL Draft lottery in August and will select first overall. Rimouski Oceanic (QMJHL) winger Alexis Lafreniere is expected to go No. 1.

Here is how the rest of Round 1 looks:

1. New York Rangers
2. Los Angeles Kings
3. Ottawa Senators (from SJS)
4. Detroit Red Wings
5. Ottawa Senators
6. Anaheim Ducks
7. New Jersey Devils
8. Buffalo Sabres
9. Minnesota Wild
10. Winnipeg Jets
11. Nashville Predators
12. Florida Panthers
13. Carolina Hurricanes (from TOR)
14. Edmonton Oilers
15. Toronto Maple Leafs (from PIT)
16. Montreal Canadiens
17. Chicago Blackhawks
18. New Jersey Devils (from ARZ)
19. Calgary Flames
20. New Jersey Devils (from VAN via TB)
21. Columbus Blue Jackets
22. New York Rangers (from CAR)
23. Philadelphia Flyers
24. Washington Capitals
25. Colorado Avalanche
26. St. Louis Blues
27. Anaheim Ducks (from BOS)
28. Ottawa Senators (from NYI)
29. Vegas Golden Knights
30. Dallas Stars
31. San Jose Sharks (from TB)

You can find the rest of the 2020 NHL Draft order here.

[ProHockeyTalk/RotoWorld Final NHL Mock Draft]

Who else is expected to go in the top 10?

After Lafreniere, the rest of the top 10 will swing on what the Kings do at No. 2. Will they go with Quinton Byfield (Sudbury – C- OHL) or Tim Stuetzle (Adler Mannheim – C/LW – DEL)? Once that’s settled, expect to see Lucas Raymond (Frolunda – LW/C – SHL), Jamie Drysdale (Erie – D – OHL), Marco Rossi (Ottawa – C – OHL), Cole Perfetti (Saginaw – C – OHL), Jake Sanderson (D – USNTDP), Alexander Holtz (Djurgarden - RW - SHL), and Anton Lundell (HIFK - C - Liiga) hear their names early.

Will a goalie go in Round 1?

It’s seeming more likely that Yaroslav Askarov (SKA - KHL) will become a first-round pick, possibly even a top-10 selection. If that happens, he would become only the fourth goalie to be picked in Round 1 since 2013.

2020 NHL Draft Lottery Phase 2

SECAUCUS, NEW JERSEY - AUGUST 10: The New York Rangers are selected No. 1 during Phase 2 of the 2020 NHL Draft Lottery on August 10, 2020 at the NHL Network’s studio in Secaucus, New Jersey. (Photo by Mike Stobe/NHLI via Getty Images)

NHLI via Getty Images

How many picks does each team have?

As of now, barring any trades, the Senators lead the way with 13 this year.

Ottawa Senators 13
Los Angeles Kings 11
Montréal Canadiens 11
Toronto Maple Leafs 11
Detroit Red Wings 10
New York Rangers 10
New Jersey Devils 9
Carolina Hurricanes 8
Tampa Bay Lightning 8
Anaheim Ducks 7
Calgary Flames 7
Florida Panthers 7
Nashville Predators 7
Philadelphia Flyers 7
San Jose Sharks 7
St. Louis Blues 7
Buffalo Sabres 6
Chicago Blackhawks 6
Colorado Avalanche 6
Minnesota Wild 6
Boston Bruins 5
Columbus Blue Jackets 5
Dallas Stars 5
Edmonton Oilers 5
New York Islanders 5
Vancouver Canucks 5
Vegas Golden Knights 5
Washington Capitals 5
Arizona Coyotes 4
Pittsburgh Penguins 4
Winnipeg Jets 4

Which prospects have NHL ties?

Among the many…

Jake Sanderson’s dad, Geoff, played over 1,000 NHL games with the Whalers, Hurricanes, Canucks, Sabres, Blue Jackets, Coyotes, Flyers and Oilers.

Nick Malik’s dad, Marek, played 691 games for four franchises and pulled off one of the most famous shootout moves in NHL history.

Brendan Brisson’s dad, Pat, is an agent whose clients include Sidney Crosby, John Tavares, and Nathan MacKinnon.

Ryder Rolston’s dad, Brian, won a Stanley Cup with the Devils in 1995 and played 1,256 games with five teams.

Mason Langenbrunner’s dad, Jamie, won two Cups with the Devils and Stars and played 1,109 games with three teams.

Luke Tuch’s brother, Alex, is a forward with the Golden Knights.

Danny Weight’s dad, Doug, won a Cup with the Hurricanes and played over 1,200 NHL games. He was most recently head coach of the Islanders.

Kienan Draper’s dad, Kris, is a four-time Cup winner with the Red Wings and played 1,157 games.


Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy.