Sunday, April 05, 2009

The Fix Is In.....or Not

On TSN's "The Reporters" this morning, Damien Cox brought up a point about fixing the draft lottery so that teams aren't tanking the season in order to get a better (which would be worse) positioning in the standings to get them a greater percentage of ping-pong balls in the good ol' Draft Lottery, which will be held April 14th. I assume this came up with the woes of the Avalanche, which Sean Leahy documents about all the injuries, and the Lightning shutting down Vinny Lecavalier, an indication of the team giving up and hoping to get another #1 pick (which I have said should be officially banned).

Yet, is there a way to adequetely make a lottery system with the fair amount of weights so teams would be inclined to play hard from game one to game 82??

First, you could give the teams who came up just short of the playoffs a higher weight in it, reason being that if they had that superstar player, they could be in the playoffs and not have the ability to be in the lottery because they are focusing on the playoffs. That's not to say it would take the weight away from the last place team in the league, but instead of giving the second most ping-pong balls to the second to last team in the league; you give it to the team who finished 17th, who was maybe a point or two away from making it to the second season.

Or you could keep the same weighted system, but pull the gimmick like they did after the lockout, taking out a ball for every 1st overall pick or playoff appearance or what-have-you in order weed out the really horrible teams from the teams who just had an off-year. Sure, it'd be harsh to a team like the Avalanche, but at the same time-- had they not had all those injuries, do you think they'd be in a high-lottery position or be one of the team either just in the playoffs or just out of the playoffs??

Finally, just get rid of the weighted system and go one ping-pong ball for each team and let lady luck fall where it may. You put the 14 teams who didn't make it into a hat, pull it them out one-by-one, and the last one in there gets the first overall pick. Not the fairest way to do it, but the most random.

There has to be some kind of way in order to fix things with the Draft. Obviously, the worse teams should be able to be given priority on one of the top picks, but it's hard to determine who is tanking for the sake of tanking or tanking for the fact they are an absolutely horrible team. It's all subjective at that point and there's no real point to accuse someone of tanking when they are basically their roster is two steps up from a SPHL team. Some method has to work and I'm sure in my lifetime, something will happen to fix it all.....or not.