Ryan Clifford brings you his top stacks and goalies for your NHL DFS GPP lineups tonight.
As always, you’ll find at least one of us in chat in the hour leading up to lock. Please join us there for any late scratches, goalie changes, or other DFS news.
We also have an NHL dedicated Twitter account where you’ll find important news and updates, as well as curated beat writer lists broken down by team.
Also new this season, my personal NHL projections and models are available for download under the projections section of the NHL tab. Of course, you can still access all player projections in our Fantasy Cruncher powered optimizer.
Slate Breakdown Podcast
I’ll be doing podcasts to go along with my write-ups this season. I can cover a whole lot more this way…
No podcast tonight. I’ll be on a short vacation for the next couple of days…we’ll get back at it next week.
Slate Preview: Game/Team Projections
Let’s Talk Chalk
Highest Owned Stack: TOR1 – Marner/Matthews/Thornton (15-25%)
Best Leverage Play: TOR2 – Nylander/Tavares/Hyman (10-15%) or Marcus Hogberg (OTT) in goal (1-3%)
Highest Owned Defensemen: Morgan Rielly, TOR (20-30%)
Best Leverage Play: Jake Muzzin, TOR (1-3%)
Highest Owned Goalie: Jordan Binnington, STL (20-25%)
Best Leverage Play: SJ1 – Kane/Couture/Labanc (4-8%) or Martin Jones (SJ) in goal (1-3%)
Top GPP Stacks
PHI: James van Riemsdyk/Sean Couturier/Joel Farabee (Proj Own: 1-3%)
The Flyers will be without Claude Giroux, Travis Konecny, Oscar Lindblom, and others. This trio will need to pick up the slack…something I’m fairly comfortable will happen. Couturier of course will be on the ice with Mika Zibanejad at 5v5 for most of this game. While the Rangers top line can dominate possession in the offensive zone, they play at a furious pace and have been prone to defensive letdowns, too. It appears as if all three of Philly’s top liners will play on the top power play unit, and Erik Gustafsson looks to be the point man…he’s the stacking option on defense for you.
STL: Ryan O’Reilly/David Perron/Mike Hoffman (Proj Own: 8-12%)
No, these three won’t be skating together at 5v5, but Hoffman is going to get top six minutes tonight, and all three will skate together on the Blues PP1. While Hoffman is both cheaper, and more valuable with his shooting prowess on that site, I think this play works for both sites. The Sharks 3.6 goals against per game thus far ranks third-worst in the league. That number jumps to 3.8 GA/game on the road, though, which is where the Sharks are tonight. O’Reilly and Perron make for a solid mini-stack, while Hoffman may be one of my favorite one-offs on the slate tonight, too. Justin Faulk would be a great addition to any stacks that include these three.
TOR: Mitchell Marner/Auston Matthews/Joe Thornton (Proj Own: 15-25%)
While they did get the win, it was generally a poor offensive showing for the Maple Leafs, who shouldn’t have struggled that hard to score more than two goals against the league’s worst defensive club. The Sens are still allowing a league-worst 3.9 goals against per game. Again, this number expectedly jumps for them when they aren’t playing in Ottawa…all the way up to 4.5! Marcus Hogberg probably starts in goal for the Sens tonight; goals will be scored. It’s a home game for the Leafs, meaning it’s Matthews we want in our DFS lineups.
BOS: Brad Marchand/Patrice Bergeron/David Pastrnak (Proj Own: 5-10%)
The Bruins are splitting up the big three if practice lines are any indication. It will be Jake DeBrusk on the top line with Bergeron and Marchand. DeBrusk is another great DFS option tonight, and can even be added to this power play stack. While Pastrnak will play alongside David Krejci and Nick Ritchie at 5v5, he still correlates to Bergeron and Marchand on the team’s top power play, and let’s be honest; would any of us be that surprised to see the Bruins go back to the familiar top line if things aren’t working out? No team all season has projected for more shots on goal than the Bruins 39.2 (per my model). While these three generally cut into each other’s production shot-wise, being on two separate lines should boost those numbers, making the trio an extremely attractive option on DraftKings. Charlie McAvoy looks to be moving to the PP1 tonight if you’re looking for an option on defense.
MIN: Mats Zuccarello/Joel Eriksson Ek/Kevin Fiala (Proj Own: 2-4%)
We got burned by Minnesota a couple of nights back, but I’m right back on them here against the Anaheim Ducks. Zuccarello had surgery to his arm in the offseason, but he made his season debut on Tuesday, and apparently played good enough to earn an immediate spot on the top line alongside of budding superstar Kevin Fiala. Zucc’s $2,500 salary on DraftKings puts him close to lock status for me on that site tonight. Eriksson Ek is such a talented young forward and I’m excited to see him get a real shot here at some quality playing time.
ARI: Conor Garland/Nick Schmaltz/Clayton Keller (Proj Own: 2-4%)
Garland has taken a major leap this season, with 6 goals and 8 assists in 15 games thus far. Clayton Keller has really benefitted from playing alongside of him this season. With the Coyotes on home ice, they’ll get the last change, which will afford them the ability to get these guys on the ice against the Kings depth. Los Angeles is allowing 3.7 goals against per game on the road this season, a far cry from their 2.6 GA/game average at home. It’s amazing how much more effective a team can be when they get to create their own matchups. While Nick Schmaltz still seems a bit too expensive for my liking on DraftKings, I don’t mind the full stack at all on FanDuel, and I’ll look to use the Keller/Garland mini in some GPP’s on DK.
NYR: Chris Kreider/Mika Zibanejad/Pavel Buchnevich (Proj Own: 10-20%)
Sorry, I’m not sorry. I have a Mika Zibanejad problem and I’m not afraid to admit it. In all honesty, I think there are some better plays tonight. Zibanejad’s projections are starting to creep down a bit, a matchup with the league’s top shutdown centerman is looming, and without the shot volume he had early in the season, I think he’s probably a pretty safe fade tonight.
So…lock him in!
One-Offs and Defensemen
Anaheim: Isac Lundestrom
Arizona: Lawson Crouse
Boston: Jake DeBrusk, Charlie Coyle
Buffalo: Dylan Cozens, Brandon Montour, Colin Miller, Matt Irwin
Columbus: Patrik Laine, Mikhail Grigorenko, Vladislav Gavrikov, Seth Jones
Los Angeles: Alex Iafallo
New Jersey: Jesper Bratt, Andreas Johnsson, Mikhail Maltsev
NY Islanders: Josh Bailey, Oliver Wahlstrom
NY Rangers: Adam Fox (FD)
Ottawa: Brady Tkachuk, Nick Paul
St. Louis: Ivan Barbashev, Justin Faulk, Carl Gunnarsson
Toronto: Jake Muzzin (FD)
Washington: Alex Ovechkin
Here are my top GPP goalies:
*I won’t say he’s my top play, because I like the Bruins tonight. But, if you’re playing a GPP lineup and you don’t have any Bruins in there, Mackenzie Blackwood would be a lock for me.
- Carter Hart, PHI
- Michael Hutchinson, TOR
- Darcy Kuemper, ARI
- Elvis Merzlikins, CBJ
- Pekka Rinne, NSH
- John Gibson, ANH