It took the Chicago Blackhawks just under two hours to sell over $2.5 million worth of season tickets for 2023-24 after the team won the NHL Draft Lottery — the Connor Bedard sweepstakes — on Monday night.
“The Blackhawks have already sold $2.5 million worth of season-ticket plans for 2023-24 in the 1.5 hours since winning the #1 pick — including more than 500 new full-season plans,” wrote the Chicago Sun Times’ Ben Pope late on Monday night.
The Hawks had an 11.5 percent chance to win the lottery, while the Anaheim Ducks were the favorites at 25.5 percent as the league’s worst team.
After miraculously earning the right to select Bedard at No. 1 in the 2023 NHL Draft, it completely alters the franchise’s rebuild plans.
After Jonathan Toews agreed not to re-sign and Patrick Kane was traded to the New York Rangers, it truly was the end of an era for a team that dominated the 2010s, winning three Stanley Cups in 2010, 2013 and 2015.
Now, a new era begins that will be headlined by one of the most hyped draft prospects in the history of the NHL, a player who has the ability to be as prolific as Sidney Crosby and Connor McDavid.
It’s truly a franchise-altering lottery ball that went the Hawks’ way on Monday, and that is not at all lost on the City of Chicago:
IT’S A PARTY, IT’S A PARTY, IT’S A PARTY pic.twitter.com/4m3scVrfqf
— Chicago Blackhawks (@NHLBlackhawks) May 9, 2023
“I just said, ‘Wow,’” Hawks GM Kyle Davidson said, per Pope. “You understand the impact that a first overall pick can have — and having the first overall pick in the right year. Hopefully that’s what we’ve got here. It can change a franchise, it can change a city and it can change an era in a team’s history. When that No. 1 card flipped over, and it was our logo, it hits you all at once.”
Connor Bedard, a native of Vancouver, put up astronomical numbers for the Regina Pats in the Western Hockey League, scoring 81 goals and 163 points in only 64 regular season and playoff games.
Regardless of how good the Chicago Blackhawks are next year, getting to watch Bedard will be worth the price of admission at the United Center.
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