So long as COVID-19 permits it, the NHL playoffs should begin late next month.
Last week I examined a few storylines and potential strategies to keep in mind when betting and/or playing DFS. Today it’ll be more of the same.
Buying Low on Calgary’s Top Line
The Johnny Gaudreau – Sean Monahan – Elias Lindholm line has not had the same spark this season. It just hasn’t. Their production numbers are down across the board, their underlyings aren’t as impressive, and they haven’t looked nearly as dangerous by the eye. Monahan, in particular, has struggled.
I think Winnipeg could be a good matchup for them, though. Particularly when looking at ‘road games’ where the Jets control matchups.
They like to use the Mark Scheifele line against opposing team’s top units. Generally he has one (or both) of Kyle Connor or Patrik Laine flanking him. That’s great news for CGY1’s chances of breaking out.
Three hundred (300) forwards played 600+ minutes at 5v5 this season. Laine, Scheifele, and Connor rank 300th, 299th, and 298th in high-danger chances against per 60. Put another way, no forwards in the league give up quality looks at a higher rate.
If WPG1 sees a steady dose of CGY1, as expected, then the latter could break out at lower ownership/prices than we’d normally see.
Capitalizing on Reputation
Braden Holtby is a big name. He has an awesome resume. He *was* very, very, good for a while. That’s not the case anymore. It wasn’t this season, at least.
Holtby posted a .905 save percentage at 5v5, where most of every game is played (even more so in the playoffs), and a .897 overall.
He ranked 49th among eligible goaltenders (54) in 5v5 save percentage, and 53rd among 58 in total save percentage. Guys like Carter Hutton, Mike Smith, and Brian Elliott out-performed Holtby despite the fact he was playing for an elite team.
It’s a much different story with Ilya Samsonov. The 23-year-old recorded a rock solid .927 save percentage at 5v5 – good for 11th and tied with countryman Andrei Vasilevskiy – and a .913 overall.
Jordan Binnington, Carey Price, Henrik Lundqvist, Marc-Andre Fleury, and Frederik Andersen are just a few of the many notable playoff-bound goaltenders Samsonov out-performed in both categories.
We don’t yet know who Washington will face in their first series. What we do know is the Capitals are a much more viable team to stack against when Holtby is in the net, which will likely be the case – at least to start the series.
Numbers via NaturalStatTrick.com