Friday’s NHL DFS Cash Game Breakdown will go through the best cash game plays for tonight’s six (6) game main slate that will have a roster lock of 7:00 PM ET/4:00 PM PT…
UPDATE (4:05 PM ET): The CGY lines are reunited, but it doesn’t really change my view on the game. Additionally, it looks like Landeskog is back in the lineup, but will be on a different line, so Kerfoot’s value is still available. I also do think that Philipp Grubauer has been hot and should be another good goalie option tonight. Lastly, Max Pacioretty is back, and if anything, that probably just eliminates Tuch as an option on DK. Still love him on FD though. If I want another VGK to have exposure to on DK, I don’t mind doing a ministack of VGK1 between Smith, Karlsson, and Marchessault.
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.
Also, 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.
Top Cash Plays
1) Nathan MacKinnon, Avalanche (DK: $8100; FD: $8400) – It doesn’t get much safer than MacKinnon tonight. He’s a machine with the trigger and a virtual lock for fantasy points thanks to his high shot volume. He may even get Gabriel Landeskog back on his line, which should help him out considerably.
2) Andreas Athanasiou, Red Wings (DK: $5800; FD: $5800) – Even after Dylan Larkin’s ridiculous performance last night, we still have a situation where AA has been leading the Red Wings roster in shot volume AND high-danger scoring opportunities over the last few weeks. He is extremely skilled and has been more willing to drive towards the net.
3) William Karlsson, Golden Knights (DK: $5600; FD $6700) – VGK1 has been one of the best lines in hockey since the start of March, and a big reason for that is the increased production by Wild Bill.
4) Mikael Backlund, Flames (DK: $5500; FD: $5900) – With Monahan struggling, Backlund gets a bit of a boost for me. He is already 2nd on the team in iCorsi over the last two weeks, but Calgary is trying a massive line shakeup where Derek Ryan is with Gaudreau and Frolik, while Backlund gets Tkachuk and Lindholm. The power-plays are also scrambled up a bit, to the point where I think Backlund should be able to get some good looks throughout the night being on a line with the overpriced Tkachuk who has led the team in high-danger scoring chances.
5) Ryan O’Reilly, Blues (DK: $6600; FD: $6500)
6) Ivan Barbashev, Blues (DK: $2700; FD: $4100)
7) Sidney Crosby, Penguins (DK: $7800; FD: $9000)
8) Luke Kunin, Wild (DK: $3000; FD: $3400)
1) Reilly Smith, Golden Knights (DK: $6200; FD: $6600) – Can also go with Jonathan Marchessault here, but my gut says go with the guy who has been playing the best and that’s Smith. He has been on a goal scoring tear to the point where he has scored five goals over his last five games.
2) Alex Tuch, Golden Knights (DK: $5700; FD: $4300) – I am hoping Pacioretty remains out of the lineup, but my preference for Tuch won’t matter either way (though his line with Stone and Stastny does look quite good). He’s a supreme value on FanDuel and still reasonable on DK. Tuch has been streaky most of the season and is coming off of a big performance in Denver, scoring a goal and dishing an assist. He also has a slight revenge narrative facing his original squad in Minnesota, who he scored against earlier this season.
3) Patrick Maroon, Blues (DK: $3100; FD: $3700) – The Rangers depth lines have been giving up way too many chances lately, and they are the lines we want to target against if we want to play the numbers correctly. I understand if you want exposure to ROR or Tarasenko, but ultimately, we want players who are likely to match up against guys like Howden, Vesey, and Namestnikov, and our best bet is going to be the 3rd or 4th line, which features great values like Maroon who has been hot.
4) Alex Kerfoot, Avalanche (DK: $3800; FD: $3400) – Kerfoot has looked DAMN good with MacKinnon in the absence of both Landeskog and Rantanen, and he is just way too cheap to ignore. There’s a slight chance that if Landeskog plays, Kerfoot gets taken off the line, but I’m thinking that’s not going to happen.
5) Johnny Gaudreau, Flames (DK: $7500; FD: $8300) – May be a little risky due to the lack of production lately, but I’m content with playing good players in good situations, and tonight is a good situation against a Ducks team that the Flames have historically played well against at the Saddledome, and a Ducks team that has been putrid on the PK.
6) Taro Hirose, Red Wings (DK: $2700; FD: $3000) – The point streak continued last night in a thrilling OT victory against the Sabres. Like I mentioned in my GPP writeup, Hirose really needs to start shooting the puck more, but he has been so solid that he has been able to accumulate points consistently, and that’s why we want him at this dirt cheap price tag.
7) Jaden Schwartz, Blues (DK: $5300; FD: $5500) – I also like the Blues 2nd line tonight because they should also get minutes against the more questionable defensive players among the Rangers forwards. I think someone like Schwartz is a little riskier just because he’s more expensive than a Maroon, but it’s nothing unreasonable.
8) Mark Stone, Golden Knights (DK: $6700; FD: $7700)
9) Matthew Tkachuk, Flames (DK: $7400; FD: $6700)
10) Jared McCann, Penguins (DK: $4400; FD: $4400)
11) Vladimir Tarasenko, Blues (DK: $7000; FD: $8100)
12) Brendan Lemieux, Rangers (DK: $2500; FD: $3500)
13) Ryan Donato, Wild (DK: $4500; FD: $3700)
14) Vinnie Hinostroza, Coyotes (DK: $4900; FD: $4600)
1) Mark Giordano, Flames (DK: $6700; FD: $7000) – Nine SOG in the 2-1 loss to the Stars on Wednesday, and accumulating a ton of peripheral points. With the Ducks seemingly taking 100 penalties a game, we know that the Flames will get every opportunity in the world to get their PP going, and Giordano is arguably the biggest piece of that puzzle.
2) Justin Schultz, Penguins (DK: $4500; FD: $4500) – The Schultz play is only if Kris Letang remains out of the lineup. Schultz as the #1 offensive option at D provides significant upside at a cheap cost.
3) Shea Theodore, Golden Knights (DK: $4700; FD: $4400) – If I’m paying for a Golden Knights defenseman, I want Theodore. He has led all VGK defensemen in iCorsi over the last two weeks and is also on the top PP unit. With Schmidt cooling off a lot, I think Theodore is not only safer, but he provides more upside.
4) Colton Parayko, Blues (DK: $5200; FD: $4800) – Parayko is having his best season as a pure defensive defenseman, but he has always shown a ton of offensive skill over the years. I think he’ll end up getting the better matchups tonight, which should bode well for him against a weak Rangers team.
5) Rasmus Andersson, Flames (DK: $2700; FD: $3900)
6) Tyson Barrie, Avalanche (DK: $6300; FD: $6300)
7) Tony DeAngelo, Rangers (DK: $4300; FD: $3700)
8) Marcus Pettersson, Penguins (DK: $3100; FD: $3600)
make sure your goalie is starting!
1) Jordan Binnington, Blues (DK: $7900; FD: $8700)
2) David Rittich, Flames (DK: $8300; FD: $8300) Phillipp Grubauer in play as well as Mike Smith (I’m not playing Mike Smith)
3) Jonathan Bernier, Red Wings (DK: $7700; FD: $7300)