There are just three games on tonight’s slate, including a Wednesday Night Rivalry matchup between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Washington Capitals. Anaheim is the only team skating in the second half of a back-to-back set.
PIT @ WSH – 7:30pm EST
NSH @ COL – 10:00pm EST
CGY @ ANA – 10:30pm EST
LAST NIGHT’S RESULTS: Centers: Four out of the five recommended centers from yesterday’s post had strong games, with Ryan O’Reilly leading the way with 44.5 fantasy points thanks to the first hat trick of his NHL career. Elias Pettersson came through once again with a goal on five shots for 20 fantasy points, while Max Domi’s great start to the season continued with yet another goal and 15.7 FP. Mika Zibanejad played a big part in tipping the scale in the Rangers’ favor against the Canadiens with a goal and an assist in the final three minutes of the game; he came away with 28.4 FP. Unfortunately, Dylan Larkin’s hot streak came to an end as the center tallied just two shots and a block for 4.8 FP. Matt Duchene had a solid game, as did the Senators, one day after the controversial video was leaked; Duchene picked up three assists, one shot and one block for 27.1 FP. Wingers: The wingers, on the other hand, had a tough night, with Micheal Ferland, Timo Meier and Mikael Granlund making minimal contributions. However, Yanni Gourde scored a goal and an assist on three shots for 24.8 FP, which was excellent value for his $5,600 price tag. Other wingers recommended in yesterday’s post that had strong performances include Vladimir Tarasenko (18.1 FP), Taylor Hall (18.4 FP), Brendan Gallagher (26.1 FP), Mark Stone (59.7 FP) and Boone Jenner (21.3 FP). Defensemen: On the back end, Thomas Chabot responded well to the controversy with a massive fantasy performance, scoring a goal and two assists and registering nine shots and one block for 44.5 FP. Ryan McDonagh found the scoresheet but had a quiet night with just 11.2 FP, though his expected ownership was a main factor in recommending him, and it turned out to be significant (50-plus percent). Another highlighted defenseman who had a strong game, however, was Neal Pionk, who continues to be a great fantasy play on home ice. He scored the game-winning goal and finished the night with two shots and four blocks for 21.6 FP (at 1 percent ownership). Vince Dunn did not contribute to St. Louis’ offense, finishing the game with 6.4 FP. However, Seth Jones, the other player discussed in yesterday’s post, tallied an assist, five shots and one block for 17.6 FP. Goalies: Devan Dubnyk had a brutal night, giving up four goals and finishing slightly in the red. Fortunately, the rest of the lineup did enough to cash, but it was still quite disappointing, especially since San Jose’s offense came primarily from its third line. However, most of the other recommended goalies in yesterday’s post had very strong games, including Andrei Vasilevskiy (30.4 FP), Frederik Andersen (36.8 FP), Jimmy Howard (36 FP), Jack Campbell (32 FP), Craig Anderson (24 FP) and, as discussed in chat, Chad Johnson (38.4 FP).
Here are some plays to consider for tonight’s slate:
Top Play: Sean Monahan ($8,200)
Sean Monahan has points in six straight games, collecting four goals and 10 points in that stretch. He skates on Calgary’s first line and first power-play unit and is averaging 16.7 fantasy points per game this season, though he has earned 32.5, 23.7, 24, 23.7, 16 and 11.2 fantasy points in his last six games, respectively.
Also consider: Sidney Crosby ($8,900), Evgeni Malkin ($8,800), Nathan MacKinnon ($8,700), Evgeny Kuznetsov ($7,500), Nicklas Backstrom ($7,100), Ryan Johansen ($6,600), Mikael Backlund ($5,400)
Value plays: Alexander Kerfoot ($4,700), Lars Eller ($4,400), Matt Cullen ($3,200), Travis Boyd ($3,000)
Top Play: Alex Ovechkin ($9,000)
Alex Ovechkin has a high ceiling any time the Capitals are on the schedule, but tonight’s game could be a barn-burner affair, which sets Ovechkin up for success. Ovi skates on Washington’s first line and first power-play unit and is averaging 20.8 fantasy points per game this season. He scored a goal on three shots for 16.8 fantasy points against the Penguins earlier this season, and he managed three goals and five points as well as 18 shots in four games against Pittsburgh last season. Ovechkin should be a popular cash play, though some will target the Capitals’ second line (T.J. Oshie) instead. Of course, you don’t have to play the top Capitals forwards, but it will be difficult to fade the game entirely, especially in cash contests. Oshie could have some solid ownership after he scored a goal the other night (giving him points in back-to-back games) and because he scored two goals and three points against Pittsburgh earlier this season, finishing that game with 41.6 fantasy points.
There are other strong winger options, however. Many will turn to Colorado’s top line with Gabrial Landeskog and Mikko Rantanen, and there should be some interest in Flames wingers Johnny Gaudreau, Elias Lindholm and Matthew Tkachuk. There are some decent value options as well, including Colorado forwards Colin Wilson and Sheldon Dries. Wilson has points in back-to-back games (one goal, four points) and will face his former team, while Dries has scored a goal in each of his last two games and has picked up a total of three points and five shots in that time.
Also consider: Phil Kessel ($8,200), Johnny Gaudreau ($8,100), Mikko Rantanen ($7,700), Gabriel Landeskog ($6,900), Elias Lindholm ($6,300), T.J. Oshie ($6,200), Matthew Tkachuk ($6,100)
Value plays: Dominik Simon ($4,400), Jakub Vrana ($4,000), Colin Wilson ($3,900), Calle Jarnkrok ($3,400), Sheldon Dries ($3,400), Dmitrij Jaskin ($3,000)
Top Play: John Carlson ($6,100)
For some reason, John Carlson’s price has dropped since the other night after he put up 29.3 fantasy points with two assists, five shots and three blocks. Carlson skates on Washington’s first power-play unit and scored a goal and an assist for 31.2 fantasy points when these teams met in Pittsburgh on the second night of the Capitals’ season. He’s averaging 18.1 fantasy points per game with five goals, 16 points, 31 shots and 21 blocks through 13 games.
Kris Letang skates on the Penguins’ top power-play unit, which should have multiple chances to strike tonight in Washington in what could be a physical and high-scoring game. Letang is averaging 17.8 fantasy points per game this season and scored two goals and three points for 40.5 fantasy points when these teams squared off in Pittsburgh’s home opener. Though he has just one point in his last four games, Letang has managed solid peripheral stat coverage in most games this season.
Also consider: Kris Letang ($6,400), Mark Giordano ($5,800), Tyson Barrie ($5,200)
Value plays: Jamie Oleksiak ($4,300), Ian Cole ($3,800), Andy Welinski ($3,500)
Choosing a goalie on tonight’s slate will be interesting. Matt Murray and Braden Holtby are expected to yield high goal totals, though you could choose one if you’re confident about which goalie might come away with the win. Another matchup has the Predators visiting the Avalanche, which is a complicated situation; that’s because the Avalanche have given up 13 goals in their last two games and because the Predators are undefeated on the road this season. However, Semyon Varlamov tends to play well at home, and this could be a heated rivalry matchup. Pekka Rinne being on the other side of the ice makes it a tricky call, and one would expect many to target him given his recent play. The other matchup features one incredibly unreliable goaltender in Mike Smith going up against Ryan Miller and the Ducks, who are skating in the second half of a back-to-back and who have struggled mightily in recent games. Additionally, Calgary’s offense has been firing on all cylinders, which sets Miller up for a difficult night. Since most goalies have yet to be confirmed, the goalie discussion will have to take place in chat later today, though with two of the three games set to start at 10:30pm EST, confirmations might not be available until after lock.
Join me in the FTA+ NHL discord chat to further discuss tonight’s slate and lineups.
Featured image credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports