If you don't think the NHL is rigging draft lotteries then you probably still believe in Santa Claus. You mean to tell me the Penguins were on the brink of relocation twice and then just so happened to miraculously land two of the greatest ever to save them?
And with how this entire situation has played out so far, Gary Bettman has to be harder than some wurtzite boron nitride. Everything is falling into place for that little weasel right now. You've got a generational talent like Alexis Lafreniere at the top of the draft board. Then you hold the first half of the draft lottery process and it is pure anarchy as the 1st overall pick gets awarded to a team to be named later. Detroit was one of the most dog shit teams in league history this past season and they get screwed over by not being awarded that first overall pick. Ottawa was complete dog shit and they had TWO picks in the first round, and they get screwed over by not being awarded that first overall pick. And now which teams have a combined 37.5% chance of ending up with the best prospect since McDavid and Matthews?
The goddamn Pittsburgh Penguins, Edmonton Oilers and Toronto Maple Leafs. I mean Gary has to have gone through every single pair of pants he owns by now after all those teams were eliminated from the playoff qualifiers.
In what world do the Pittsburgh Penguins deserve to have Crosby immediately takeover for Mario and then have Lafreniere immediately takeover for him? In what world do the Toronto Maple Leafs deserve yet another forward they won't be able to afford just because they're a bunch of losers who pay $40 million to 4 forwards who then proceed to get shutout in an elimination game? In what world do the Edmonton Oilers deserve their like 7th 1st overall pick in the last 10 years? The answer to all of those questions is no world. In no world do any of those teams deserve anything remotely close to not only receiving the 1st overall pick in the draft, but a draft in which a 2x CHL Player of the Year is up for grabs. This isn't Nail Yakupov. This isn't Alexandre Daigle. Heck, even Nico Hischier and Jack Hughes are pretty good but Lafreniere is on a completely different level than both of them.
And if the league is truly addicted to rigging the draft lottery and they simply cannot let this process happen without getting their grimy little hands involved? Well then let's rig it the other way. If the league wants to continue to see the sport growing down south and building on any of that momentum they gained with Nashville in the Cup Final a few years ago, Alexis Lafreniere will be on the Predators next season. If the league wants to give the State of Hockey a team they can actually get behind won't constantly let them down every year, then Alexis Lafreniere will be on the Wild next season. Don't send him to Florida because then we'll never hear from Lafreniere again. Don't send him to Winnipeg because he'll hate his life and we don't need that. Don't send him to New York because…well just don't do that.
If the NHL wants to rig this draft lottery tonight, then you rig it for Nashville or Minnesota. Anything else and we riot.