We all know about the first-round pick forfeit situation, but one reason I heard that was interesting for why they didn't give it up last year when they picked Matteau is because of just how low that pick was. Picking 29th for the first round means you don't pick until 59th in the second, where there might have been a steep drop-off in talent by the time they got to make their first pick.
If they wind up in the standings to pick around 10-15th, then they can draft a mid-2nd round player that might have just fallen out of the first, but still get your highest pick of the year without missing out on too much.
Of course, if you're due to pick within the top 10, you might miss out on a good player, but again that means you get to pick high in the second and it still might make sense to do that if you're trying to be strategic about dealing with this and still getting the best pick possible. But losing a 14th overall wouldn't hurt as much, I would bet. So if they actually get 3 or 4 points out of the next 3 games (and maybe knock the Rangers out of the 8th spot in the last game, we can dream) it would help make the decision on this.
And then there's next year, and who the heck knows what's going to happen with the team before now and then. I've also heard everything about the '14 draft that it's not going to be good at all, to people saying it's actually deeper than this year's. It all depends on how much Lou is willing to bet on the turnover of the team after this year, and whether it'll be good enough to get back in the playoffs so we don't have to forcefully give up a potential top-10 (and hopefully not be in a bad enough position for higher).
The point is, this might just be the prime time and position to give up the pick because we actually have some control over its position right now that we might not next year, to not get hurt badly by the forfeit. You obviously don't tank in the playoffs or quit in the regular season until you're absolutely eliminated from them to worry about a pick. For the position we've wound up in right now, it's a good time to do this so we don't have to take our chances next year.
We could also finally stop discussing it in dumb repetitive posts like this one and worrying about it, and take some pressure off next year about where they'll finish (of course that pressure's more on the fans, not the team), apart from being in a playoff position again.
....unless, of course, we win the draft lottery again with a 0.5% chance. Look, don't take this away from me, I need it right now.