Sabres win National Hockey League draft lottery and this year's top pick

Pontus Aberg Jacob Markstrom

The Buffalo Sabres entered Saturday night with the best odds at winning the NHL Draft Lottery.

They're joined by the Montreal Canadiens and the last-place finishing Buffalo Sabres as the three teams still in the running after the league unveiled picks No. 4 through 15 as part of the NHL draft lottery conducted in Toronto on Saturday night. "I'm just very, very happy for our fanbase".

It was especially tough to take in 2015 when the top prize was Connor McDavid, who went to the Edmonton Oilers and won the Art Ross Trophy in each of his first two seasons as the NHL's leader in points. This is still the highest Detroit has picked since they took Keith Primeau with the third overall selection in 1990.

The NHL draft begins June 22 in Dallas. The team is also in a state of flux under new team owner Tom Dundon.

Carolina is searching for a general manager after Ron Francis was reassigned to another front-office position last season. It is the ninth consecutive year without a postseason run for the team. Islanders (from Calgary Flames), 13.

Scouting bureau director Dan Marr regards Dahlin as "the clear-cut No. 1, pro-ready prospect". The 18-year-old was named the best defenseman at the World Juniors in Buffalo earlier this year. And Dahlin also had an assist in two games at the Pyeongchang Olympics in February.

Vying for the top pick in the draft is nothing new to Buffalo.

The lottery settled one more selection with Philadelphia landing the 14th pick to complete a trade in which the Flyers sent Brayden Schenn to St. Louis in June.

The New York Rangers moved down from the No. 8 selection to No. 9 while the New York Islanders, the owner of two first-round picks after acquiring a first rounder from Calgary in exchange for Travis Hamonic past year, will pick 11th and 12th.

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