Daily Cupcakes - Links From Around the NHL - April 10th, 2012

April 7 2012; Denver, CO, USA; Colorado Avalanche center Matt Duchene (9) skates off following the game against the Nashville Predators at the Pepsi Center. The Predators defeated the Avalanche 6-1. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-US PRESSWIRE

The Toronto Star thinks it is time to change the Draft Lottery.

The right way to do this lottery is to make it a straight draw of the 14 non-playoff teams, and let the cards fall where they may. Yes, that would mean Calgary, at 17th overall, could get the first pick if it was drawn that way. What's wrong with that? It really would make teams inclined to compete to the bitter end, and really, this business about competitive balance being ensured by the draft really isn't borne out by reality, is it? Or the Islanders wouldn't have a top pick every year. Or the Oilers. Or the Blue Jackets.

This will be a terrific draft to watch, and to evaluate in five years, because more than most it will clearly identify the teams with sharp scouts and the teams that don't do their homework, go in blind and pay for it.

Gabriel Landeskog is getting some love.

Whether or not Colorado Avalanche winger Gabriel Landeskog wins the 2012 Calder Trophy as the NHL’s rookie of the year, it’s safe to say every team in the league would love to add him to their roster.

The 19-year-old native of Stockholm, Sweden may not have the silky offensive moves of Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, who was chosen first overall by the Edmonton Oilers in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft, one spot ahead of Landeskog. But this product of Djurgården’s system is indisputably the most complete, all-around player to enter the NHL this season.

The final draft rankings are in.

Sarnia Sting forward Nail Yakupov was listed as the top North American-based skater in the draft final rankings released by NHL central scouting Monday.

The 18-year-old from Nizhnekamsk, Russia, recorded 31 goals and 69 points in 42 games for the Ontario Hockey League's Sting during an injury-shortened 2011-12 season. Last season, he finished tied for fourth in the OHL with 101 points.

If Yakupov is picked first overall at the June 22 draft in Pittsburgh he would be the fifth OHL player selected No. 1 overall in the last six drafts, joining Patrick Kane (London, 2007), Steven Stamkos (Sarnia, 2008), John Tavares (London, 2009) and Taylor Hall (Windsor, 2010).

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