For the second time in three years, the New Jersey Devils have lucked into the No. 1 overall draft pick.
In 2017, they turned the fifth-best odds into the No. 1 overall pick, and Tuesday night they jumped up two spots to claim the top spot.
The real winner, though, is Taylor Hall.
Both of the Devils’ top picks have been won while Hall was on the roster. (And, really, you could also call the Devils’ trade for Hall in June 2016 a lottery win in itself, couldn’t you?)
Of course, his good lottery luck didn’t start in New Jersey — it followed him there all the way from Edmonton.
The former Oiler, who himself was a No. 1 overall pick by Edmonton in 2010, watched his club land the top picks in the two seasons that followed his own draft year — Ryan Nugent-Hopkins in 2011 and Nail Yakupov in 2012 — and then again three years later in 2015 in the Connor McDavid sweepstakes.
That’s five lottery wins for Hall’s teams, for those counting at home.
The 2018 Hart Trophy winner has been known to have a little fun on social media, and the self-proclaimed “NHL lottery ball specialist” was in fine form Tuesday night as he tweeted up a storm after the lottery balls fell in his favour once again.
All signs point to the Devils using their first overall pick at this June’s draft on Jack Hughes, a dynamic forward out of the U.S. National Development Team Program who has been the consensus top prospect for more than a year now. Hughes is already familiar to Hall, as the two have skated together in previous summers.
Perhaps with Hughes joining the squad, the trio of top picks can spark some playoff luck in the years to come. That, or another pick.
— New Jersey Devils (@NJDevils) April 10, 2019