We have another manageable slate with seven games on tap tonight in the NHL. The slate features some of the hottest players in the league, so options will be plentiful. It also features an 11:00pm EST puck drop, which is definitely a rarity in the NHL. The Blue Jackets and Predators are the only teams skating in the second half of back-to-back sets; the Oilers also play tomorrow.
BUF @ BOS – 7:00pm EST
CBJ @ FLA – 7:00pm EST
VAN @ TOR – 7:00pm EST
NSH @ MTL – 7:00pm EST
NYI @ STL – 8:00pm EST
EDM @ LAK – 10:00pm EST
TBL @ SJS – 11:00pm EST
LAST NIGHT’S RESULTS: Both FanDuel lines posted in chat were able to cash, and most of the highlighted players from yesterday’s post came through. Sidney Crosby had an underwhelming night, tallying just 12.8 fantasy points, though Dylan Larkin had a strong game with the game-winning goal in overtime, giving him 21.6 FP for the evening. Nathan MacKinnon, who was in both lineups, finally broke free for a multi-point performance, scoring a goal and two assists (all on the power play) on eight shots for 42.3 FP. Both Gabriel Landeskog (28.5 FP) and Mikko Rantanen (41 FP) had multi-point nights as well. Alexander Radulov picked up two assists and four shots for 22.9 FP, while Tyler Seguin scored both of Dallas’ goals, coming away with 32.5 FP. Though Viktor Arvidsson had a disappointing night, registering just four shots for 6.4 FP, his 50 percent ownership made it an easier pill to swallow. Linemate Ryan Johansen scored and added four shots and a block for 20 FP in Nashville’s 4-3 overtime loss to the Red Wings. Andreas Athanasiou also scored for Detroit. Cam Atkinson failed to find the scoresheet but followed through with a base of eight fantasy points thanks to five shots, though linemate Artemi Panarin scored one of the Blue Jackets’ two goals. Valeri Nichushkin had a quiet night with just 4.8 FP, though his linemates scored both goals, he just didn’t get a piece of either. Rocco Grimaldi was a wild punt at $3,000 and actually came through with an assist, and while Ondrej Kase put up a rare goose egg, other recommended options with comparable price tags, such as Blake Coleman (28 FP), Miles Wood (11.2 FP) and Conor Garland (15.2 FP), had strong games. Alex Tuch tallied an assist and one shot for 9.6 FP. On the back end, Josh Morrissey finished with 9.6 FP despite getting shut out, and Michal Kempny managed 6.4 FP. Jakob Chychrun recorded three shots and two blocks for 8 FP, while Zach Werenski extended his point streak with an assist and 12.8 FP. Olli Maatta scored a power-play goal and added four shots and a block for 20.5 FP, and Kris Letang managed 20 FP with an empty-net goal as well as three shots and two blocks. Lastly, Matt Murray extended his win streak to seven games with a 4-0 shutout against the Jets; he made 33 saves and came away with 46.4 FP, which was especially significant at a low ownership rate in FanDuel cash contests.
Elite Plays: John Tavares ($8,200), Brayden Point ($7,800)
There are plenty of superstar centers on tonight’s slate, but there are a few that stand out for a few reasons. For one thing, both are relatively affordable compared to the other options, and for another thing both players have been consistent contributors in recent games. The first of those players is Toronto’s John Tavares ($8,200), who has points in seven out of his last eight games, collecting seven goals and 13 points in that stretch. He skates on Toronto’s first line and first power-play unit and is averaging 18.9 fantasy points per game this season. He has also recorded at least four shots in six straight contests, giving him a solid floor to go along with consistent production.
The other player is Brayden Point ($7,800), who skates with Nikita Kucherov at even strength and on the power play for Tampa Bay. The Lightning are the best team in the NHL and show no signs of slowing down, especially offensively. Tonight’s matchup pits them against a very weak defensive team in the Sharks; this game could be a shootout between two high-powered offenses, which makes Point and his affordable price tag worth serious consideration. Point is averaging 18 fantasy points per game this season and is riding an eight-game point streak (three goals, 10 assists) into tonight’s contest.
Also consider: Connor McDavid ($9,300), Steven Stamkos ($8,300), Patrice Bergeron ($8,300)
Mid-Range Play: Mathew Barzal ($6,800)
Mathew Barzal ($6,800) is on quite a hot streak, scoring eight goals and 11 points during his current six-game point streak. He skates on the Islanders’ second line and first power-play unit and is averaging 14 fantasy points per game this season. He and the Islanders have a favorable matchup against an inconsistent Blues team; even though St. Louis is one of the worst teams, that doesn’t mean this will be an easy game. However, Jake Allen is susceptible to giving up goals, and Barzal has seven of those in just his last four games.
Also consider: Elias Pettersson ($6,500)–DTD, Pierre-Luc DuBois ($6,400), Ryan Johansen ($6,100), Phillip Danault ($5,700)
Value Play: Evan Rodrigues ($3,600)
Evan Rodrigues ($3,600) still appears to have Jack Eichel’s spot on Buffalo’s top line and top power-play unit, putting him in a great spot to succeed. While he hasn’t been able to take advantage of that role, he’s still extremely inexpensive and offers exposure to both Jeff Skinner and Sam Reinhart as well as the top power-play unit. Using him in your line will also allow you to spend up elsewhere.
Also consider: Henrik Borgstrom ($3,300)
Elite Play: Nikita Kucherov ($9,200)
No one is hotter right now than Nikita Kucherov ($9,200), who has points in 12 straight games and in 22 out of his last 23 games. That is not a typo. Kucherov has also recorded seven straight multi-point games, scoring six goals and 21 points in that stretch. He skates on Tampa Bay’s second line and first power-play unit and is averaging 20.8 fantasy points per game this season.
Also consider: David Pastrnak ($8,500), Artemi Panarin ($8,100), Brad Marchand ($8,000), Joe Pavelski ($7,700), Cam Atkinson ($7,500), Filip Forsberg ($7,000)–DTD
Mid-Range Play: Jake DeBrusk ($5,300)
Jake DeBrusk ($5,300) skates on Boston’s second line and first power-play unit, making him an interesting pivot off BOS 1 who offers exposure to everyone in Boston’s top six. The Bruins and Sabres haven’t been involved in barn-burners this year, but DeBrusk did score a goal against Buffalo last week, and he has points in three out of his last four games, earning 38.4, 8, 18.9 and 12.8 fantasy points in his last four games, respectively. He has been streaky this season but is an interesting option among the mid-range choices on tonight’s slate.
However, there are plenty of other strong choices, many of which are listed below. One such example is Evgenii Dadonov ($5,800), who has seen a rather substantial price drop given his recent struggles (one point in his last five games). However, he’s capable of a multi-point game and has a favorable matchup against presumed starter Joonas Korpisalo, who has been shaky at times this season. The other Florida wingers (Jonathan Huberdeau ($6,800) and Mike Hoffman ($6,500) are always strong bets as well, but Dadonov’s price tag is particularly noticeable on FanDuel.
Also consider: Jonathan Huberdeau ($6,800), Viktor Arvidsson ($6,700), Mike Hoffman ($6,500), Evgenii Dadonov ($5,800), Craig Smith ($5,300), David Perron ($4,800)
Value Plays: Joonas Donskoi ($4,300), Zack Kassian ($3,400)
Joonas Donskoi ($4,300) has goals in three straight games and points in four straight, collecting four goals and five points on 10 shots in that stretch. He has recorded 18.4, 28.8, 26.4 and 9.6 fantasy points in his last four games, respectively, and makes for a solid value option on tonight’s slate. Though San Jose’s offense is difficult to peg, Donskoi has found good chemistry with linemates Evander Kane and Tomas Hertl. He recently lost his spot on the power play with the return of Marc-Edouard Vlasic, though Donskoi remains an interesting play, especially since none of his recent goals came on the man advantage anyway.
Another strong value option on tonight’s slate is Zack Kassian ($3,400), who could see significant ownership in cash contests. That’s because he is skating with Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl on Edmonton’s top line. He may not be on the top power-play unit, but getting exposure to McDavid and Draisaitl for just $3,400 is a steal, and Kassian is no stranger to offense even if it doesn’t come to him consistently. After all, he tallied an assist in five shots for 16 fantasy points the other night in Arizona, which bodes well for his second game with the big boys on the top line.
Also consider: Frank Vatrano ($4,000), Lukas Radil ($3,200), Anthony Duclair ($3,200), Rocco Grimaldi ($3,000), Joel Armia ($3,000)
Elite Play: Brent Burns ($7,500)
Brent Burns ($7,500) has points in four straight games, scoring three goals and nine points in that stretch. He skates on San Jose’s top power-play unit, with Erik Karlsson and Marc-Edouard Vlasic manning the second unit. Burns is averaging just 16.9 fantasy points per game this season but has earned 43.4, 37, 22.4, 26.4, 9.6 and 17.6 fantasy points in his last six games, respectively. He hasn’t been overly reliable for his price tag this season, but his floor through peripheral stat coverage is almost always there, and he has the ability to rack up the points as well. Tampa Bay isn’t an easy opponent, but these two offenses could run wild in tonight’s matchup.
Also consider: Erik Karlsson ($7,300)
Mid-Range Plays: Jeff Petry ($4,900), Alex Edler ($4,800)
Jeff Petry ($4,900) has put together solid fantasy performances in 12 out of his last 13 games, earning 14.4, 20, 9.6, 12.8, 12.8, 10.1, 13.3, 6.4, 12.8, 35.2, 15.2, 8 and 32.8 fantasy points in his last 13 games, respectively. He skates on Montreal’s top power-play unit and will be eager to help teammate Shea Weber get the best of his former team. The fact that he has been taken off the top power-play unit does hurt his overall potential; however, he’s still managed to put up solid point totals regardless of which man advantage unit he has worked on.
One of the most reliable DFS rearguards is Alex Edler ($4,800), who provides a solid floor and often has high upside. He’ll face a shaky goaltender tonight in Michael Hutchinson, who has given up 18 goals in five appearances this season. Edler skates on Vancouver’s top power-play unit and is averaging 14 fantasy points per game this season.
Also consider: P.K. Subban ($5,600), Zach Werenski ($5,400), Shea Weber ($5,400), Rasmus Ristolainen ($5,200), Ryan Ellis ($4,900)
Value Play: Darnell Nurse ($4,500), Ryan Pulock ($4,400), Jordie Benn ($3,600)
Darnell Nurse ($4,500) has had a few quiet performances but remains a popular choice since he offers exposure to Connor McDavid and the Oilers’ top power-play unit at an affordable price. He has three points in his last five games and nine points in his last 10.
Ryan Pulock ($4,400) has been a solid value option in recent games, earning 9.6, 23.2, 22.4, 6.4, 9.6, 11.2, 19.2, 24.5 and 11.2 fantasy points in his last nine games, respectively. He skates on the Islanders’ second power-play unit and has registered 16 shots and 11 blocks in his last five games.
If you’re looking for a very inexpensive play, there are several options listed below; however, someone who is flying under the radar is Montreal’s Jordie Benn ($3,600), who quietly has points in three straight games and in four out of his last five games. Benn has recorded two goals and five points in his last five games, earning 18.4, 16, 21.6, 1.6 and 12.8 fantasy points, respectively. He does not see time on the power play but could be an interesting under-owned punt.
Also consider: Jake Muzzin ($4,500), Mattias Ekholm ($4,300), Nick Leddy ($4,300), Anton Stralman ($3,900), Ryan Murray ($3,700), Devon Toews ($3,500), Brett Kulak ($3,500)
Top Play: Robin Lehner ($7,900)
Robin Lehner ($7,900) has been on a roll of late, winning six games in a row and averaging 31.2 fantasy points per game during that stretch. Though the Islanders are still somewhat of a risky team, the goaltending has been solid this season, and tonight’s matchup against St. Louis is a favorable one, making Lehner and his appealing price tag a worthwhile play.
Additional options will be discussed later once confirmations have been announced.
Featured image credit: Mark LoMoglio-NHLI via Getty Images