The Western Hockey League’s bantam draft goes Wednesday morning with the Regina Pats knowing they will pick no lower than second.
The lottery is for the six teams who did not make the playoffs. Regina owns Swift Current’s first round pick and the Broncos have the best chance of winning the lottery after finishing last in the standings this season.
The Pats own Swift Current’s pick after a trade with Lethbridge in the 2018-19 season that saw Jake Leschyshyn and Nick Henry go to the Hurricanes. Swift Current had originally traded the pick to Lethbridge in the deal that saw them acquire goaltender Stuart Skinner when they won the WHL title in the 2017-18 season.
Regina’s pick is owned by Saskatoon. The Blades received that pick in the trade that brought forward Cam Hebig and goalie Ryan Kubic to Regina in 2018.
Any of the six non-playoff teams from 2019-20 can move up a maximum of two spots as a result of the lottery. If a Swift Current, Prince George, Regina or Red Deer ball is drawn in Wednesday’s lottery, the Pats will hold the number one pick.
The furthest the Pats could fall in the draft is to number two, should a Moose Jaw of Tri-City ball come out in the lottery.
Besides the bantam draft, the first ever US prospects draft will be held.
The 2020 draft will consist of two rounds, and 44 selections, with each WHL Club afforded the opportunity to make two draft choices. Regina holds the 18th and 27th overall picks in the two-round draft.
Players eligible will be 2005-born players who reside in Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Kansas, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.
Players not selected in the 2020 WHL U.S. Prospects Draft will remain eligible to be selected in the 2020 WHL Bantam Draft on Thursday, May 7, or listed by a WHL Club at any time thereafter.