Thursday’s NHL main slate features eight (8) games and a 7:00 PM ET/4:00 PM PT roster lock.
As a reminder, my GPP articles this season will include three types of stacks: Projected High-Ownership (chalky), Projected Mid-Level Ownership and Projected Low-Ownership. On top of that, every once in a while, I will also throw an Extremely Low Ownership dart throw as well.
While GPP lineups often focus on stacking, there will be plenty of times where you need to insert a value play, so I will also include a few of my favorite value plays in each of these GPP focused write-ups. I wouldn’t want your lineups to be scattered with value plays, but I do know that you will end up needing to play a cheap option or two every now and then.
Also, please check out the following important information…
Please be sure to keep track of the LINES (who plays with who) and goalie confirmations (who are the starting goalies). Here are the resources I recommend to keep an eye on any developments:
This information comes straight from writers who follow each of the NHL teams closely. If anything important ever comes up, they are surely the first to know and will know earlier than any DFS or NHL website. Following this list will make it easier for you to keep an eye on all types of changes throughout the day (e.g. line changes, goalie confirmations, and late scratches).
If a goalie gets confirmed as the starter throughout the day, this is where you’ll want to go to make sure they are locked in.
This resource is very good to check on line combinations from the previous game and the projected lines for the next game. Be aware that lines may update as they come in, so if a team holds a morning skate, there’s a good chance that the lines that are updated from the morning skate are going to be used in that night’s game.
Before I go over tonight’s stacks, I want to talk about some of the stats I like to look at when it comes to recent play. It’s no secret that a lot of teams have changed drastically compared to earlier this season due to coaching changes, trade deadline maneuvers, and full-fledged tanking. This has led me to look deeply into pace and high-danger scoring chance rate at a micro level. Below, you’ll see pace (5v5 Corsi For + 5v5 Corsi Allowed) and high-danger chance rate (both for and allowed at 5v5) over the last two weeks. It’s a small sample size (anywhere between 6-8 games for each team), but it’s enough to get an idea of the teams that may be good to target, target against, or completely avoid for GPPs.
Stacks are not listed in order of preference
Projected High-Ownership Stacks
EDM1: Leon Draisaitl/Connor McDavid/Zack Kassian
Possible add-on: Darnell Nurse (5v5) or Oscar Klefbom (PP1)
I think after a game like the Oilers had on Tuesday against the Kings, it makes a lot of sense for Edmonton to be pretty popular tonight. While I don’t believe it’s really something that’s justified due to Dallas’ improved defensive play this season, I think it’s quite clear McDavid and company are the type of line that gives us the upside we crave at this time of year when paylines are seemingly higher and higher every single night. I am never opposed to targeting against Anton Khudobin (even though I know he’s been pretty solid this year), and I especially don’t have a problem considering he had to play half of last night’s game due to Ben Bishop going down with another injury.
Projected Mid-Level Ownership Stacks
CHI1: Alex Debrincat/Jonathan Toews/Patrick Kane
Possible add-on: Erik Gustafsson (PP1) or Duncan Keith (5v5)
San Jose’s top line has been brutal over this two-week span, and yesterday, Head Coach Peter Deboer finally admitted Logan Couture has been playing at about 50% due to illness. Well, that would have been nice to know PETE. For whatever reason, Couture’s line still sees tough competition on a regular basis, and with San Jose’s subpar goaltending from the Jones/Dell combo, I think the Hawks top line can provide some much needed upside tonight. The Kane/Toews/Debrincat combo has looked very good together in limited action, and the likely uptempo matchup tonight is going to suit their game very well.
WPG2: Kyle Connor/Kevin Hayes/Patrik Laine
Possible add-on: Jacob Trouba (PP1) or Tyler Myers (5v5)
It might be hard to believe Winnipeg’s entire team has a CF% below 50%, and it may be even harder to believe WPG1 is pushing to be below 40%. Collectively speaking, they are struggling, but the one bright spot I see is WPG2. The combination of Connor, Hayes and Laine have generated more than half of the team’s offense at even strength and have scored nine 5v5 goals over their last seven games. The Islanders haven’t looked like the same team we’ve seen throughout the season, at least in their own zone. Goaltending has been a little more inconsistent, and they’ve struggled to contain teams in their own zone as well.
Projected Low Ownership Stacks
DET2: Taro Hirose/Andreas Athanasiou/Luke Glendening
Possible add-on: Niklas Kronwall (PP1)
I think AA has been Detroit’s best player since the trade deadline and does provide us with upside on a nightly basis. I think his line combination with Taro Hirose and Luke Glendening is pretty solid as well. Hirose was a big free agent signing after finishing up his college career with Michigan State, and he hasn’t disappointed, earning a point in each of the first four games of his career. To be honest, I think there’s a lot left on the table just because he has been such a pass-first player, but I think he’s eventually going to realize he’ll need to be more aggressive with his shot (kind of felt this way about Mitch Marner earlier in his career). I think this matchup against the Sabres can be sneaky good. They were somehow pummeled by a team full of third liners and minor leaguers (Ottawa) on Tuesday and are looking lifeless on the ice. Keep in mind, they actually played pretty well for most of the season but now don’t have as much motivation, being completely out of the playoff hunt.
Projected Extremely Low Ownership Stacks
LA3: Tyler Toffoli/Adrian Kempe/Carl Grundstrom
Possible add-on: Alec Martinez (PP2)
The Kings are a funny team. They clearly are not playing even close to their abilities, but they are certainly not as bad as their record may suggest. One line, in particular, has shown more life than others, and that’s their 3rd line centered by Adrian Kempe. It should be noted, even though they get less ice time than 4-5 of the forwards on the roster, it’s actually Toffoli and Grundstrom who are 2nd and 4th on the team in iCorsi (individual shot attempts) and 1st and 2nd on the team in iHDCF (individual high-danger chances for) over the last two weeks. They will get one of the better line matchups of the night and can provide good value if you need to fill a couple roster spots with cheap forwards.
- DALPP1: Tyler Seguin/Alexander Radulov/Jamie Benn/Roope Hintz/John Klingberg
- SJ3: Marcus Sorenson/Joe Thornton/Kevin Labanc
- VAN1 and VAN2 if Jonathan Quick starts
DraftKings Value Plays
- Adrian Kempe (C-LA): $2500
- Jeff Carter (C-LA): $3600
- Rudolfs Balcers (W-OTT): $3100
- Taro Hirose (W-DET): $2600
- Zack Kassian (W-EDM): $3200
- Carl Grundstrom (W-LA): $2700
- Dylan DeMelo (D-OTT): $3800
- Tyler Myers (D-WPG): $3600
- Markus Nutivaara (D-CBJ): $2700
FanDuel Value Plays
- Jean-Gabriel Pageau (C-OTT): $3400
- Adrian Kempe (C-LA): $4100
- Taro Hirose (W-DET): $3000
- Rudolfs Balcers (W-OTT): $4000
- Carl Grundstrom (W-LA): $3300
- Max Veronneau (W-OTT): $3300
- Ryan Pulock (D-NYI): $4000
- Dylan DeMelo (D-OTT): $4100
*Make sure your goalie is starting. I would generally recommend just correlating your goalie with a stack that you are using (as long as it’s not a game stack), but if not, these are my favorites…
- Connor Hellebuyck, Jets (DK: $8100; FD: $8000)
- Sergei Bobrovsky, Blue Jackets (DK: $7600; FD: $9000)
- Jimmy Howard, Red Wings (DK: $7500; FD: $7500)