Today’s NHL Cash Game Breakdown goes over Monday’s eight (8) game slate that has a roster lock of 7:00 PM ET/4:00 PM PT.
UPDATE (5:53 PM ET): With Jake Allen confirmed in net for the Habs, I think it’s an absolute must to play 1 out of McDavid/Draisaitl/Nugent-Hopkins. I am likely playing 2 now though and I’m sure there will be lineups out there with 3.
UPDATE (3:55 PM ET): It appears VGK is going with six D instead of five. I think Pietrangelo/Martinez are still cash viable considering the 3rd pair is Hague/Whitecloud, which doesn’t scream like a pair that’ll get huge minutes. I’m going to also add Nikolaj Ehlers as a cash play thanks to his move to the top line due to Laine being confirmed out.
As a reminder, this is going to be our content schedule throughout the season:
*Projections by Ryan Clifford for every slate (available for download AND uploaded into the optimizer)
*Lineup Coach in chat 1 hour before lock each slate
1-2 Games: Showdown Article for the last game
3-4 Games: Cheat Sheet and GPP Breakdown
5 Games or More: Cash Game Breakdown, Cheat Sheet, and GPP Breakdown
1-2 Games: Showdown Article for the last game
3 Games or More: Cheat Sheet and GPP Breakdown
Additionally, you can keep an eye on late news by looking at our NHL Team Beat Writers lists on Twitter by clicking here.
Monday’s slate happens to be Day #6 of the 2021 regular season, and it certainly feels like it has been a crazy six days. While a lot of the Mafia members have been able to find some success over the first six days, it has been a bit up and down for me.
Keep in mind, this season is going to be a BIG GRIND. These schedules are loaded, so you can count on hockey just about every day of the week. If you’re not feeling a slate for any reason (e.g. don’t like the teams, don’t like the players, stressful day of work, don’t like how big the slate is, don’t like how small the slate is), there’s no harm in taking a night off.
Some of you have probably already seen how much damn variance there is in hockey. This is not like other sports where you pay up for a superstar and still get points when they have a bad night and hit their “floor”. When things go bad, you’ll see a player get a couple shots on goal and barely give you anything, or hell, they can be like John Carlson yesterday and give you 0.
Stick to the process and stay within your comfort level when it comes to contest selection, and you should generally be okay when it’s all said and done.
Positional Cash Game Rankings
- Connor McDavid, Oilers (DK: $8400, FD: $8800)
- Auston Matthews, Leafs (DK: $8300, FD: $8500)
- Vincent Trocheck, Hurricanes (DK: $5200, FD: $4400) // better FD play
- Nick Suzuki, Canadiens (DK: $5300, FD: $5700)
- Elias Lindholm, Flames (DK: $5700, FD: $5400)
- Morgan Frost, Flyers (DK: $2500, FD: $3200)
- William Karlsson, Golden Knights (DK: $6100, FD: $5100) // better FD play
- My gut is telling me that the Oilers are going to rebound similar to what they did against the Canucks in their first series. Even though the Oilers only scored 1 goal on Saturday, they were able to generate 13 high danger scoring chances, in a game that was pretty high in pace. Unless Carey Price can work his magic again, I would be shocked if the Oilers don’t do some damage tonight. While I prefer McDavid, you can get similar exposure from rostering Ryan Nugent-Hopkins or Leon Draisaitl.
- Matthews is going to be in play more often than not. It’s not a surprise that every time you look at your cash game contest, he’s somewhere around 50% ownership. He’s going to shoot the puck at a high rate on a consistent basis and that’s with or without Old Man Thornton to his left.
- I am not sure if I can be much more impressed by Nick Suzuki through the first two games of this season. Yes, it helps that he has two linemates in Anderson and Drouin who can move the puck, but Suzuki is the one with the most talent. Take advantage o this price before it bumps up past $6000.
- Frost gets an elevated role where he’s boosted up to the 1st line and 1st power-play unit due to an injury to Sean Couturier. He is extremely raw and can get thrown around by bigger defenders, but definitely has the talent to score when given the opportunity.
- Brayden Schenn, Blues (DK: $3600, FD: $5300) // available as C on FD
- Max Pacioretty, Golden Knights (DK: $7500, FD: $7800)
- Kirill Kaprizov, Wild (DK: $5000, FD: $4700)
- Kevin Fiala, Wild (DK: $6600, FD: $6500)
- Conor Garland, Coyotes (DK: $5800, FD: $4500) // better FD play
- Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Oilers (DK: $7400, FD: $7400)
- Victor Olofsson, Sabres (DK: $4500, FD: $6300) // better DK play
- Viktor Arvidsson, Predators (DK: $4800, FD: $5500)
- Claude Giroux, Flyers (DK: $5000, FD: $7100) // better DK play, flat out do not play on FD cash
- Matthew Tkachuk, Flames (DK: $6900, FD: $6100) // better FD play
- Zach Sanford, Blues (DK: $3200, FD: $4700)
- Schenn is way too cheap on DK to ignore in what is really a dream matchup. I would not be surprised if the Sharks end up being the worst team in the West. They give up way too many scoring chances and absolutely NEED premium goaltending in order to compete, which is a lot to ask for from Martin Jones and Devan Dubnyk at this stage of their careers.
- The Wild are in fantastic for this season and years to come thanks to two men, and those two men are Kirll Kaprizov and Kevin Fiala. Kaprizov has simply looked like he belongs in the NHL. There’s going to be growing pains like every young winger over the last decade, but we are going to want to take advantage of this “low” price point while it lasts. As for Fiala, he’s basically a guy who is looking like a fantasy monster who mirrors guys like Ovechkin and Pastrnak due to his aggression on the wing. While I know others may be reluctant to target Wild players today due to the downed pace from those first two Anaheim games, but I think the Wild will be the ones pushing the pace tonight.
- Garland looked AMAZING in his first two games against the Sharks.
- Olofsson is in a prime scoring situation on any given night thanks to his role on Buffalo’s top power-play unit. They have struggled so far, but it is inevitable for them to pull everything together given the talent that’s there. At $4500 on DK, he needs to be given strong consideration.
- Giroux’s line likely gets a bit of a bump due to the absence of Sean Couturier. With this road matchup, I can see BUF1 matching up with the Giroux line, which would be a plus in the sense that BUF1 is going to play with more pace.
- Torey Krug, Blues (DK: $5200, FD: $5100)
- Jared Spurgeon, Wild (DK: $3700) Matt Dumba, Wild (FD: $4400)
- Jakob Chychrun, Coyotes (DK: $5900, FD: $3900) // Only playing on FD for cash
- Jeff Petry, Canadiens (DK: $5600, FD: $5300)
- Mattias Ekholm, Predators (DK: $3600, FD: $4000)
- Alex Pietrangelo, Golden Knights (DK: $6700, FD: $6400)
- Alec Martinez, Golden Knights (DK: $4600, FD: $4000)\
- The signing of Torey Krug is bittersweet because it also came with the loss of Pietrangelo; however, from an offensive standpoint, it can be debated that there isn’t a drop off (if any). This matchup against the Sharks is definitely a much better one than the Avalanche, and I think it’s going to help us see what Krug is capable of doing in his new Blues uniform.
- My ranking for Pietrangelo is contingent on VGK continuing this trend with playing five defensemen every night. I wouldn’t be surprised if they go with six at some point, and if they do, I would drop him around 6/7. If you want a more economical option there, I also like Martinez.
- Spurgeon is stupid cheap on DK for a guy who generally packs a good amount of upside at both ends of the ice. Unfortunately, his FD price isn’t too great, but that’s where we can take advantage of Dumba’s favorable price tag.
- Jacob Markstrom, Flames (DK: $8100, FD: $8000)
- Carter Hart, Flyers (DK: $8400, FD: $8300)
- Darcy Kuemper, Coyotes (DK: $6900, FD: $7400)
- Markstrom has proven to be a top 5 goaltender in the league and is currently minding the nets for what I feel is the most complete Flames team in a long, long time. It may seem lazy to target the goalie who got the shutout in the first game of a series, but the numbers suggest it wasn’t just a coincidence. High shot volume (which we want), plus not many high-danger chances (also what we want) is a good recipe for success.
- Hart is 3-0 throughout his career against the Sabres and considering what we were able to see from him as well as the rest of the Flyers in their series against the Penguins, it’s pretty difficult to imagine his luck changing tonight.
DraftKings: Connor McDavid or Ryan Nugent Hopkins, Brayden Schenn, Kirill Kaprizov, Max Pacioretty
FanDuel: Connor McDavid or Ryan Nugent Hopkins, Kirill Kaprizov, Torey Krug, Jacob Markstrom