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Tonight’s slate presents seven matchups, all of which have playoff implications given how tight the standings are. None of the teams are skating in the second half of a back-to-back, though Columbus, San Jose and Arizona are set to play tomorrow night as well. Jake Voracek was suspended for two games and will not play tonight.
NOTE: Today’s recommendations are subject to change. Join us in the FTA+ DFS NHL discord chat for the latest plays and advice.
TBL @ TOR – 7:00pm EST
OTT @ PHI – 7:00pm EST
CBJ @ NYI – 7:00pm EST
SJS @ MIN – 8:00pm EST
ARI @ CHI – 8:30pm EST
CAR @ COL – 9:00pm EST
NYR @ EDM – 9:00pm EST
LAST NIGHT’S RESULTS: Last night was not a good night. At all. Neither line cashed, and the FanDuel line was the worst FanDuel line I’ve made all year (unless of course you played the original line before I took out the guy who scored a hat trick and earned nearly 50 fantasy points, in which case you probably cashed). It didn’t help that John Gibson ended up not starting (and that it wasn’t announced until after the Vegas-Calgary game had started); though we had time to make the switch to Ryan Miller, Miller is not a goalie I would have considered playing on the slate, especially with several other solid options available. He gave up three goals in the first period of what was a miserable effort by the Ducks. Adam Henrique and Troy Terry combined for just 4.8 fantasy points, which was horrendous. The studs (and there were a lot of them) came up short on another bizarre night in DFS NHL; Alex Ovechkin, Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron, Blake Wheeler and Sidney Crosby had bad nights, and the Jets’ effort against the Capitals was quite flat. Crosby missed the net on an empty-net goal, which would have helped, but it was still a brutal evening. Zach Aston-Reese was injured, and we didn’t find out Jared McCann was back on Crosby’s line until after lock. All in all it was a very tough night, but today is a new day.
Connor McDavid ($9,200) has points in eight straight games, recording multi-point efforts in each of his last four games with a total of nine assists in that span. He skates on Edmonton’s top line and top power-play unit and will face a Rangers team that struggles on the road. McDavid is averaging 20 fantasy points per game this year and scored a goal and an assist against the Rangers earlier this season.
Nathan MacKinnon ($8,200) and the Avalanche are without captain Gabriel Landeskog, but the team was able to pick up a 3-0 win against Buffalo this past weekend, a game in which MacKinnon scored a goal and two assists and came away with 33.3 fantasy points. He skates on the team’s top line and top power-play unit and will face a Hurricanes team that has been giving up plenty of goals in recent games. MacKinnon has been seeing at least 22 minutes of ice time per game for a while now, so he should have plenty of opportunities to accrue fantasy points. While he’s been somewhat hit-or-miss lately, he definitely presents a high ceiling.
Sean Couturier ($7,500) has points in six out of his last seven games, scoring four goals and four assists in that stretch. He skates on the Flyers’ top line and top power-play unit and is averaging 15.3 fantasy points per game. While he has just one goal on five shots in two games against the Senators this year, the Flyers had trouble beating Mike McKenna when these teams met in Philadelphia earlier this season; since McKenna is now in the Flyers organization, Philadelphia will look to take on either Craig Anderson or Anders Nilsson tonight. Couturier will have plenty of chances to produce as he sees 20-24 minutes of ice time in all situations. He should be joined by Claude Giroux on the top line with Jake Voracek serving his two-game suspension.
Value Play: Christian Dvorak ($3,100) is starting to heat up, picking up points in back-to-back games with two goals and an assist on five shots. He skates on Arizona’s second line and first power-play unit.
Also consider: John Tavares ($8,100), Sebastian Aho ($7,700), Tomas Hertl ($6,400), Dylan Strome ($5,800), Ryan Strome ($3,800), Jean-Gabriel Pageau ($3,500), Eric Fehr ($3,200)*
*Points in four straight games (2G,2A)
While there are several strong choices at the winger position on tonight’s slate, Leon Draisaitl ($8,300) has been the most consistent of the elite options. He has points in 13 straight games entering tonight’s matchup against the Rangers, recording nine goals and 20 points in that stretch. He skates on the Oilers’ second line and first power-play unit and is averaging 17.8 fantasy points per game this season.
Value Play: Michael Grabner ($3,000) has been back in Arizona’s lineup for two games and already has two goals and seven shots. Though he doesn’t see time on the power play, he is a min. price option going up against a team that generally gives up a lot of goals (though not the other night against Dallas). Grabner skates on the Coyotes’ third line and also gets time on the penalty kill, which led to one of his two goals the other night against the Kings.
Also consider: Nikita Kucherov ($9,200), Patrick Kane ($9,100), Mitch Marner ($8,300), Cam Atkinson ($7,400), Mikko Rantanen ($7,300), Claude Giroux ($7,100), Jason Zucker ($5,600), Timo Meier ($5,300), Brady Tkachuk ($4,700), Oskar Lindblom ($4,500), Marcus Sorsensen ($3,900), Ryan Donato ($3,800), Anthony Duclair ($3,600), Sam Gagner ($3,400), Scott Laughton ($3,400)*
*Points in four straight games (2G,2A)
Though the Tampa Bay-Toronto game could go any number of ways, Morgan Rielly ($6,600) is an intriguing play on tonight’s slate given the steady floor he has provided over his last 10 or so games. In fact, he has earned at least 8 fantasy points in nine straight games, recording three goals and eight points as well as 26 shots and 17 blocks in that stretch. He also enters tonight’s game with points in four straight. That being said, Toronto is not an overly reliable team for DFS purposes, and Victor Hedman ($6,300) has actually been the better player during this season series, so I may end up paying down on defense tonight. Obviously Brent Burns ($7,300) is in play, especially against his former team, but I have decided to fade him for the rest of the season. It has worked out over the last few games, though it’s always a risk given his ability to break the slate (and his generally high ownership).
I would much prefer to go with two value options, however, such as someone like Travis Sanheim ($4,400) who remains very affordable on FanDuel (his price was finally raised on DraftKings). Sanheim skates on the Flyers’ shutdown pairing and also plays on the team’s second power-play unit, so he offers correlation with Philadelphia’s top players. Other than the Flyers’ recent game against Washington, Sanheim has been a consistent DFS producer. He’s collected points in six out of his last seven games, including four goals and eight points. That being said, he doesn’t offer consistent peripheral stat coverage, so he’s been very point-dependent of late. Fortunately he has a favorable matchup tonight, but there’s still risk.
If you want a safer and cheaper option, consider Kris Russel ($3,800), who has been blocking shots at a very high rate. He has 16 blocks in his last two games and 34 blocks in his last eight games. Russell also chips in 1-2 shots per game, and there’s always a chance he’ll pick up a point. Even so, his peripheral stat coverage makes him a strong floor option at a reasonable price point.
Additional options are listed below; join us in chat for other top value plays across the industry.
Also consider: Brent Burns ($7,300), Seth Jones ($5,600), Tyson Barrie ($5,400), Darnell Nurse ($5,400), Ryan Pulock ($4,300), Oscar Klefbom ($4,300), Jakob Chychrun ($3,900), Nick Leddy ($3,900), Brett Pesce ($3,600), Jonas Brodin ($3,600), Tim Heed ($3,500)
NOTE: Goalie options will be discussed in chat once more starters have been confirmed.
Martin Jones ($8,600) has not lost to the Wild in two games this season, though Devan Dubnyk has been a tricky goalie to figure out lately; one night he shuts out the best team in hockey, the next night he gets pulled after getting shelled early on. Jones is also very unpredictable since he can give up five goals on any given night. Darcy Kuemper ($8,600) is another option worth considering; after all, he has won nine out of his last 10 starts. But Chicago’s offense is risky to go up against, especially on home ice. Thomas Greiss ($8,300) recently shut out the Blue Jackets in Columbus, and he and the Islanders will look to bounce back at home after a disappointing loss to the Flyers. But the Islanders haven’t looked like the same team lately, and they’ll likely be without Johnny Boychuk tonight. Plus, as poorly as they’ve played, Columbus is in a must-win mode, which makes them unpredictable. Mikko Koskinen ($7,800) is another possibility given how much the Rangers have struggled on the road this year. However, it’s difficult to narrow down the options when we don’t even have a list of starters, so make sure to join us in chat as we pick up the goalie discussion throughout the day.
Join us in the FTA+ DFS NHL discord chat to discuss tonight’s slate and lineups.
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