The next year the Isles were again a terrible team. In fact, they were worse than in 2009-10. With a 30-39-13 record for 73 points. Seven fewer points than they had amassed in the previous year.
That record ranked them as the fourth-worst team in the league. Only Florida (72pts), Colorado, (68pts), and Edmonton (62pts) were worse.
Just like in 2010, the winning team could only move up four spots. So winning could move the Isles to the top spot and give them a chance to pick consensus number one pick Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.
This time the Isles held a 10.7% chance of picking first. Edmonton had a 25% chance at winning yet again. But New Jersey actually won the draft and moved from eighth to fourth in the draft. Meaning Edmonton would retain the first overall pick, and move the Isles back a spot.
Going fourth that year was Adam Larsson. While the Islanders picked Ryan Strome with the fifth overall pick.
Strome had a great sophomore year, putting up 50 points but never hit the same heights again for the Isles. Maybe if the Isles had drafted fourth they could have traded Larsson for Taylor Hall five years later?
Modern draft lottery:
Winners – 1st, 10th, 5th
The Isles actually end up moving back here. Minnesota jumps up to grab the second overall pick and the Sens get the third overall pick. Pushing the Isles back two spots to sixth overall. Which nets them Mika Zibanejad.
It took Mika a while to become that top center, but over the last two years with the Rangers, he’s shown that he’s a clear top-line center. Having him behind Tavares would have been incredible for the Islanders.