When Draft Lotteries are held, the general narrative is that everyone finds out the order of selection at the same time. But Monday night’s NHL Draft Lottery seemed to challenge that notion.

The picks were revealed one-by-one with the San Jose Sharks, the NHL’s fourth-worst team during the regular season getting the fourth pick. To that point, everything seemed to be going fine. Then, host Kevin Weekes revealed that the Columbus Blue Jackets were picking third before heading to a commercial to set up the cliffhanger finish.

“And there is our first change in the order,” Weekes said. “With Columbus dropping to third. So now either Anaheim or Chicago will select first overall. Anaheim has never selected first overall and the last time Chicago drafted No. 1 was when they took future Hall of Famer, Patrick Kane.”

Only, the card was never turned over. The broadcast quickly shifted to a quick advertisement for Monday’s playoff game between the Vegas Golden Knights and Edmonton Oilers before going to commercial.

And when the commercial was over, there was no reference to Columbus having already been revealed as the No. 3 pick. Bill Daly, the Deputy Commissioner of the NHL, in fact, said “Good luck to each of Anaheim, Columbus and Chicago” before turning the card over — officially revealing the Blue Jackets as having the No. 3 overall pick.

The Draft Lottery reveal was held in Secaucus, New Jersey at NHL Network studios and simulcast on ESPN in the United States and Sportsnet in Canada. Hockey fans on both sides of the border saw the same mistake get made.

It’s worth noting that the presumptive No. 1 pick, Connor Bedard, is one of the most highly-regarded prospects in years. The Chicago Blackhawks won that pick on Monday. That was always going to raise some suspicions, given that the Blackhawks are much more of a celebrated team in the NHL than either the Blue Jackets or Anaheim Ducks. The awkward way it transpired during the lottery will do nothing to ease those suspicions.

[Photo Credit: ESPN]

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