INFORMS Open Forum

An Optimizer for the 2021 NHL Expansion Draft

  • 1.  An Optimizer for the 2021 NHL Expansion Draft

    Posted 10 days ago
    Edited by Rafid Mahmood 10 days ago
    Greetings all,

    Hockey fans may know that the Seattle Kraken will be joining the NHL as the league's newest expansion team. On July 21st, Seattle will hold its expansion draft and they will get to draft players from the other teams, who themselves are allowed to protect some players of their own.

    Our team of OR engineers from the University of Toronto have built a website that lets users play 'armchair GM' and model the draft as an optimization problem. Users can choose different player performance or financial metrics for each team to optimize as well as target specific picks and protections. The site does the rest.

    Please feel free to check out the app here:
    If you enjoyed it, feel free to share or send us a retweet at @NHLExpansionOpt!

    Rafid Mahmood
    AI Resident
    Nvidia Corporation

  • 2.  RE: An Optimizer for the 2021 NHL Expansion Draft

    Posted 8 days ago
    Thanks for sharing this fun use of OR!  I wanted to share some research that may be of interest to you and other hockey fans.  Zach Shearin, a talented undergraduate student, and a die-hard Carolina Hurricanes fan, used analytics to analyze the National Hockey League's point system through an operations research and statistical analysis lens. More information about his analysis can be found here: Does the Current NHL Point System Influence Game Play?  Or via his conference proceedings


    Jennifer Pazour
    Associate Professor
    Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
    Troy NY