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Plenty of 4th overall NHL Draft picks have gone on to be stars

The Detroit Red Wings learned that they will be selecting 4th overall in the 2020 NHL Draft, despite having the League’s worst overall record by a wide margin. And while there is plenty of disappointment in the Lottery results, there is some hope to go along with it.

There have been plenty of NHL Players drafted with the 4th overall pick over the years who have gone on to be stars – including one Steve Yzerman in 1983.

Let’s take a look at some other 4th overall draft picks who went on to have major impacts in the NHL.

– Larry Murphy
The future Detroit Red Wings defenseman was drafted by the Los Angeles Kings in 1980, and went on to have a Hall of Fame career spanning 20 years with four Stanley Cup wins.

– Ron Francis
Francis was drafted by the Hartford Whalers in 1981, and went on to play 23 season in the NHL. He finished his career behind only Wayne Gretzky in career assists and fifth in NHL history in points with 1,798.

– Paul Kariya
Red Wings fans know all about Paul Kariya, who was taken 4th overall by the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim in 1993. He finished his career with 403 goals, 989 points, and a Hall of Fame selection in 2017.

– Roberto Luongo
Goaltender Roberto Luongo retired last offseason after a stellar NHL career of 489 career wins. He is the all-time leader wins for both the Florida Panthers and Vancouver Canucks, and helped Team Canada on the international stage achieve gold medal success.

– Nicklas Backstrom
The Washington Capitals took forward Nicklas Backstrom fourth overall in 2006, and he’s had quite the career to this point playing alongside Alexander Ovechkin. He is Washington’s all-time leader in assists, and ranks second in team history for points behind Ovechkin.

– Alex Pietrangelo
The captain of the St. Louis Blues is one of the NHL’s top defenseman, and led the Blues to the 2019 Stanley Cup championship. A veteran of 758 games, he’s racked up 450 career points.

– Mitch Marner
The Toronto Maple Leafs forward has morphed into one of the NHL’s dynamic young players since he burst onto the scene in 2016. In only his third NHL season, he recorded 94 points; prior to the COVID-19 shutdown this past March, he had amassed 67 points in 59 games.

– Cale Makar
The Colorado Avalanche snagged one of the NHL’s top young defenseman in the 2017 NHL Draft. He was second among rookies with 50 points (12 goals, 38 assists) in 57 games prior to the COVID-19 shutdown, and was a leading candidate to win the Calder Trophy as the League’s best rookie.

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