As I wrote last week, Montreal needs to stop getting points.
Now, some may think there’s a pride factor, and the Habs should continue to win.
But I think the best thing for this team is to get a high draft pick.
And when I say high, I mean top three.
Two weeks ago, they were in that third spot. Now, they’re fifth. And only two points between them and four other teams ahead of them.
So in the next week, they could end up with the ninth overall pick. That’s not good.
How important is that top three pick? Let me put it to you this way: there’s a better chance of a superstar being taken in the top three than in the sixth to eighth spot. There’s a better chance of getting a 50-goal scorer. There’s a better chance of getting someone who will make a difference to the team. There’s a better chance of getting a significant long-term impact player.
Don’t believe me? Compare the draft picks of every year since the lockout. It’s the top three picks versus picks six to eight. Tell me if there’s any group of later picks you would take over the top three in any year.
If there’s not, then you should be hoping for a top three pick.
Top three: Alexander Ovechkin, Evgeni Malkin, Cam Barker
Picks 6-8: Al Montoya, Rostislav Olesz, Alexandre Picard
Top three: Sidney Crosby, Bobby Ryan, Jack Johnson
Picks 6-8: Gilbert Brule, Jack Skille, Devin Setoguchi
Top three: Erik Johnson, Jordan Staal, Jonathan Toews
Picks 6-8: Derick Brassard, Kyle Okposo, Peter Mueller
Top three: Patrick Kane, James van Riemsdyk, Kyle Turris
Picks 6-8: Sam Gagner, Jakub Voracek, Zach Hamill
Top three: Steven Stamkos, Drew Doughty, Zach Bogosian
Picks 6-8: Nikita Filatov, Colin Wilson, Mikkel Boedker
Top three: John Tavares, Victor Hedman, Matt Duchene
Picks 6-8: Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Nazem Kadri, Scott Glennie
Top three: Taylor Hall, Tyler Seguin, Erik Gudbranson
Picks 6-8: Brett Connolly, Jeff Skinner, Aleksandr Burmistrov
Top three: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Gabriel Landeskog, Jonathan Huberdeau
Picks 6-8: Mika Zibanejad, Mark Scheifele, Sean Couturier