The following is of the utmost importance if you want to be successful at NHL DFS…
Keep track of each team’s lines (who plays w/ whom) & goalie confirmations (who is starting). These things can change daily & are incredibly important. Below are the three best resources for keeping an eye on developments:
Kenneth Le’s List of Twitter Beat Writers
Goalie Confirmations (via LeftWingLock.com)
Current Line Combinations (via LeftWingLock.com)
Each team’s beat writer follows their practices & games closely. If anything important comes up (e.g. line changes, goalie confirmations, late scratches), they learn & report it earlier than any NHL or DFS site can.
LeftWingLock is our favorite source for tracking “official” goalie confirmations & checking a team’s line combinations from previous games. Be aware, though, that a team’s lines can change throughout the day: If a beat writer reports a team has made a line change during their morning skate, it’s likely those new lines will be used in that night’s game.
Salary differences between DK & FD have gotten out of hand, so there may be times a player is much more cash-game-viable on one site than the other. In those cases, we will highlight the better site/price in GREEN. However, reading each player’s breakdown should give you an idea of how we feel about him on each site.
Be sure to read our DFS NHL FAQ that goes through the important information you’ll need to know as an Elite Fantasy NHL subscriber!
We have a massive 12-games on tap tonight. There are so, so many players that would be decent…
We have a massive 12-games on tap tonight. There are so, so many players that would be decent cash plays tonight. I’m going to highlight and breakdown my favorites, with a few from each pricing tier, and a “daily dumpster dive” option for those of you wanting to go with a stars and scrubs approach. First, let’s look at a quick overview of tonight’s matchups.
As always, I will do my best to keep the article updated to reflect any late scratches, line changes or surprise goalie confirmations. Please follow me on Twitter @RyanClifford as I will always post any updates that affect my article there, as well.
Good luck tonight!
Top Cash Plays
1) Patrice Bergeron, BOS (DK $7700 FD $8400) – Bergeron has his high-scoring winger back, as David Pastrnak made a quiet return to the lineup on Tuesday night. That was a tough matchup for Boston, facing an Islanders team that excels at shutting down the opposition’s top lines. Tonight, however, the Bruins are in New Jersey to take on the Devils. Bergeron will 100% be in my final cash lineups tonight – a point per game play that’s averaging nearly 5 peripherals (SOG/BS) per game recently.
2) William Karlsson, VGK (DK $4900 FD $6600) – This is a DK only play, as I think Karlsson is just too expensive on FD. The Golden Knights have the slate’s second-highest projected total (3.6) and Karlsson is on a nice run of late, with 2 goals and 7 assists in his last eight games. He has averaged nearly 4 peripherals per game over his last six, so we should have a decent floor to fall back on should he fail to record a goal or assist.
3) Tomas Hertl, SJ (DK $6000 FD $6300) – The Sharks have had a couple rough games, and it’s cost Hertl as far as his fantasy production is concerned. Before those two games, though, he’d recorded at least 3.5 DK points in eight of nine games. He’s proven to be extremely consistent, and with the Sharks having a better matchup tonight against L.A., I’m expecting Hertl to get back on track tonight.
4) Connor McDavid, EDM (DK $7800 FD $9100) – McDavid is the best player in the world, but is in a terrible situation in Edmonton. This team has gone seven straight games with 3 or less goals – but McDavid is making the most of it. In those seven games, he’s recorded points on 13 of the team’s 19 goals (3G 10A). It’s not the best matchup for McDavid and the Oilers, but McDavid is coming off a 12-game point streak, and is likely to find himself back on the score sheet again as long as Edmonton can actually score a few.
Daily Dumpster Dive: Sean Kuraly, BOS (DK $2800 FD $3600) – Kuraly and the Bruins depth will have a dream matchup against the Devils bottom-six forwards, comprised completely of players off their AHL affiliate in Binghamton. Kuraly has 3 points (2G 1A) and 10 SOG in his last three games – he’s likely to smash value if he can get back onto the score sheet.
1) Johnny Gaudreau, CGY (DK $7800 FD $8300) – Gaudreau and Bergeron are the two players I absolutely want in cash lineups tonight. Gaudreau and the Flames get a tired Ottawa team playing a road B2B, and he gets Sean Monahan back in the lineup. Calgary has a projected total of 4.2 goals tonight, over a half-goal more than Chicago and Vegas, who are both slated for 3.6 – the second-highest total. Johnny Hockey is averaging 5.6 peripherals per game over his last five, recording 5 goals and 3 assists in this stretch. NOTE: Gaudreau’s teammate Matthew Tkachuk is another elite cash option tonight, despite his hefty price tag.
2) Alexander Radulov, DAL (DK $7500 FD $6800) – A strong case can be made for either Radulov, or his linemate Tyler Seguin, in cash games tonight. Radulov is my preference though – especially on FD – with 7 goals in his last seven games. He’s also added a couple assists, and is averaging nearly 6.5 peripherals per game in this stretch. Dallas is middle of the pack in projected total – just 3.0 tonight – but Radulov is providing elite level floor and ceiling right now.
3) Patrick Kane, CHI (DK $7900 FD $9000) – Kane has slowed way down of late, reaching cash value only 5 times in his last 10 games. He is still an elite player though, with a strong floor (4.4 peripherals per game over last 10) and extremely high ceiling. The Blackhawks are on home ice against the Flyers tonight, and have the slate’s second-highest implied total, currently sitting at 3.6. Kane should avoid the Flyers top-six forwards for the most part, giving him really nice GPP appeal, as well.
4) Claude Giroux, PHI (DK $6600 FD $7800) – On the other side of this game, we know Chicago can give up goals in bunches too, so I wouldn’t mind having some Flyers exposure. Giroux would be my preferred cash option, as he’s registered at least 4 peripherals in each of his last four games – averaging nearly 3 DK points per game on SOG/BS alone. Giroux has 3 goals and 14 assists in his last 12 games, giving us some upside, as well.
5) J.T. Miller, TB (DK $3600 FD $4400) – Miller is playing atop the Lightning lineup, alongside of Stamkos and Palat, and also getting time of the team’s top power play unit – which has been absolutely deadly all season long. Miller has 3 points in four games since being moved to the Stamkos line, but the risk here comes from his low floor – he has just 8 peripherals in those four games, meaning there’s a real chance of a zero-point, 1-2 SOG night with him.
6) Justin Williams, CAR (DK $5400 FD $5500) – Williams has a point in four of his last five games – totaling 3 goals and an assist. In his last 9 games, Williams has scored 5 goals for the Hurricanes. He gets top line minutes, top power play minutes, and Carolina is on home ice tonight, facing a Lightning team that just skated in Washington last night.
7) Dylan Sikura, CHI (DK $2900 FD $3200) – Sikura’s linemate Jonathan Toews is another decent cash option tonight, but I prefer some of the other centers, and would prefer to take advantage of the value here to get exposure to the Hawks top line. Sikura has a negligible ceiling – 0 goals and just 7 assists in 26 games this season – but what he has been doing well, is shooting the puck. He’s registered 15 SOG in his last four games – averaging 2 DK points per game from peripherals alone.
8) Vincent Hinostroza, ARI (DK $4400 FD $4900) – In his last four games, Hinostroza has scored four goals, registered 18 shots on goal, 5 blocks – and yet, his price on DK is $400 LESS than it was before this run. The Coyotes are in Florida tonight, playing a Panthers team ranked 25th in goals against per game (3.3). Hinostroza gives you top line minutes, as well as PP1 minutes, for a lower mid-tier salary.
Daily Dumpster Dive: Taro Hirose, DET (DK $2500 FD $3000) – Hirose is a Hobey Baker finalist. He led the NCAA in scoring this season, and recorded an assist in his first career NHL game. It’s not an easy matchup for the Red Wings tonight, but Hirose has legit scoring ability, and is the stone-cold minimum price on both sites tonight.
1) Roman Josi, NSH (DK $6200 FD $6600) – There’s nobody on this list that I absolutely HAVE to have tonight, but Josi is probably my favorite of the bunch. He’s rather expensive – which takes up a lot of cap space I’d prefer to use on forwards tonight – but he’s as consistent as they come. He’s registered at least 4 peripherals per game in 14 of his last 15, and has gone nine straight with at least 2.5 DK points from SOG/BS. He probably needs a point of some kind to actually hit cash value, which is definitely a risk with Josi, as he has just 4 of those in his last 11 games.
2) Seth Jones, CBJ (DK $5800 FD $5900) – Jones and Werenski keep flip-flopping on the PP1 for Columbus, but it’s Jones who has manned the point there most recently. Edmonton’s PK is TURRIBLE, giving Jones a lot of upside tonight – he’s one of my favorite GPP defensemen. He skates almost 30 minutes per game, and is averaging 4.5 peripherals per game over his last 10. Like Josi though, Jones is scoring much these days, with just 4 points in his last 10 games, so again, there is some risk here if you’re paying up on D.
3) Shea Weber, MON (DK $5900 FD $5700) – Weber has at least 2 DK points in each of his last 11 games from shots + blocks. Unlike the two above him, Weber actually has been piling up points, with 6 (3G 3A) in his last seven games. Unfortunately, it’s a tough matchup for the Canadiens in general tonight, as they are hosting the New York Islanders, who rank 1st in the league in goal suppression. I think he’s a safe bet to hit his peripheral floor, but I’m not super high on Montreal to actually score too many goals tonight.
4) Marc-Edouard Vlasic, SJ (DK $4500 FD $4300) – Let’s get down to some of the cheaper plays. Vlasic took awhile to get back to his old form, but he’s seems to be there at this point. He’s averaging 4.2 peripherals per game over his last five, and has actually piled up a goal and 5 assists in those games – despite the Sharks only managing 15 total goals in those five games. His price is creeping up, but he’s still cheap enough that he provides a lot of value if his high level of play can continue – he certainly has a nice matchup tonight in L.A.
5) Travis Hamonic, CGY (DK $5000 FD $4100) – Calgary has the outrageous 4.2 total tonight, of course, but Hamonic isn’t a guy that’s going to pile up points. He’s more of a peripheral “floor play”, but one that has increased upside due to the total tonight. Hamonic has at least 2 DK points in six of seven games, from peripherals alone, and averages over 5 SOG/BS per game in this stretch. Peripherals don’t matter as much on FD, but Hamonic is just $4,100 over there – which more than makes up for the site’s devaluation of SOG/BS.
6) Colton Parayko, STL (DK $5000 FD $4500) – Parayko is another cheaper option that provides a super consistent peripheral floor. Parayko does have 6 assists in his last eight games, however, giving him a bit more upside than Hamonic (I prefer Hamonic due to matchup, however). St. Louis is hosting Detroit tonight, and their projected team total sits at 3.5 – fourth-highest on the slate – although I feel like that should probably be higher based on the team’s recent play.
Daily Dumpster Dive: Steve Santini, NJ (DK $2500 FD $3500) – Santini is priced at site minimum on both DK and FD tonight. He’s averaging 4.4 peripherals per game in his last five, which puts him over cash value on DK alone. He has just 3 points in 31 games this season, and a tough matchup against Boston tonight, but he gives you a safe floor while allowing you to pay up elsewhere.
1) Ben Bishop, DAL (DK $7600 FD $9400) – Bishop is back in goal for Dallas, and his remarkable streak continues, as he allowed just 2 goals against on Tuesday night against the Panthers. There are only four teams that shoot the puck more per game than Colorado, so Bishop has some upside here on home ice, in a game the Stars have 57% implied odds to win. DK-only for Bishop…no need to pay $9,400 for a goalie on FD.
2) Corey Crawford, CHI (DK $7700 FD $7800) – Chicago is also on home ice, and Corey Crawford will look to pick up the victory tonight against the Flyers. Chicago’s 35.1 shots against per game ranks 30th in the league, which always gives Blackhawk goalies a ton of upside. Crawford had five straight wins before losing to Vancouver 3-2 on Monday. He’s allowed just 9 goals against in his last five starts, including a shutout against the Habs on Saturday night.
3) Louis Domingue, TB (DK $7800 FD $8200) – Domingue has 12 wins in his last 13 appearances for the league’s #1 team. He’s allowed just 15 goals against in his last six starts, going 5-1. The Lightning are actually slight underdogs tonight, but I’m not betting against the Lightning. Domingue arguably has the most upside of any goaltender on the slate, as Carolina attempts more SOG/game than anyone in the league, and Tampa allows 32.4 SA/game.