After 11 games last night we have a much smaller three-game NHL slate to tackle this Friday. Interesting games include a massive mismatch as the Bruins enter as heavy road favorites over the Red Wings. We also have a revenge game for Taylor Hall as the Devils travel to Edmonton to take on the Oilers.
Top Line Stacks
VAN at WPG
Elias Pettersson ($6,900) – Brock Boeser ($6,200) – J.T. Miller ($6,100)
Winnipeg has been a juicy fantasy matchup for most teams. The Jets have improved defensively since their poor start to the year but still feature the fourth worst penalty kill in the league. The Canucks have surprised many by their strong start and sit sixth in the league in goals per game while featuring the 11th best power play. All three of their first-liners skate together on the power play and, while none are super cheap, they all come in under $7K in salary. All average well over 18 minutes per game and average between 2-3 SOG per game. The Canucks are coming off a loss last night in Chicago and should be pushing hard here to avoid back-to-back defeats. It’s a good spot for their offense, and specifically their top line, to rebound after a poor effort Thursday.
NJ at EDM
Nico Hischier ($4,500) – Taylor Hall ($6,500) – Kyle Palmieri ($5,900)
The Oilers have allowed three or more goals against in four of their past six games. On a bigger slate the improved Oilers might be a spot to avoid, but with fewer options and a nice juicy revenge narrative on our hands, the Devils’ top line makes some sense here. Hall played in Edmonton for six years before getting traded and has picked up some steam of late, scoring six points in his past four games. This line might get split up on the power play, but given NJ’s struggles there — and the Oilers’ proficient penalty kill — that might not be a bad thing. With an affordable price and two scoring wingers, who are coming in with improving form, this line looks like a solid contrarian candidate for tonight’s tiny slate.
Superstar to Target
David Pastrnak ($8,300), BOS at DET– The Bruins’ star winger is off to an absurd start to the season. Pastrnak comes in with 30 points in 15 games and is scoring at a goal per game pace. Pastrnak’s near-30% shooting percentage likely will come down soon, but I’m not sure how you fade him or the Bruins’ entire first line in what is a complete layup of a matchup against the Red Wings. Detroit has the worst penalty kill percentage in the league, features two goalies with save percentages well under .890 and has the second worst team GAA. The Bruins also are down some wingers due to injury so Pastrnak, who has averaged more than 20 minutes of ice in his past two games, should get ample opportunities here. He might be chalky, but there will be better spots to fade the league’s top scorer, who plays on the league’s best power play.
Value on Offense
Zach Senyshyn ($2,600), BOS at DET– The Bruins are banged up at forward, which has made room for Senyshyn to move up into a consistent role for the time being. Normally a third-liner wouldn’t make the cut here, but the Bruins are playing the Red Wings tonight and we have a tiny group of players to choose from, so Senshyn piques the interest at just $100 over the bare minimum. He potted two assists in his first game, and the former first-round draft pick should get an opportunity to impress again against the worst defensive team in the league.
Alex Chiasson ($3,200), EDM vs. NJ- Chiasson has been skating on the Oilers’ second line of late but also gets exposure to the power play with Edmonton’s first unit. Chiasson is averaging over one minute a night on the PP but still has yet to score a goal on the season. The 22-goal scorer from a year ago should break out of this slump soon given his role on the team. Seeing as he’s going up against the Devils, who have the seventh worst penalty kill in the league, chancing him for a breakout here at a bargain price makes sense.
Tuukka Rask ($8,300), BOS at DET– Boston is by far the biggest favorite on this slate despite being on the road. Rask is coming in off a loss but should be in a great spot to bounce back. The Red Wings still average more than 30 SOG per game but maintain the lowest goals scored per game average in the entire league. This gives Rask not only a great shot at the win bonus, but a chance to put up more than 30 saves in the process, as the Red Wings just don’t have a ton of shooters that beat goalies consistently. With few other pay-up options, Rask might be obvious, but he’s by far the surest thing we have on this slate at goalie.
Jacob Markstrom ($7,700), VAN at WPG– Markstrom is projected to start this game, but coming off a loss last night in Chicago where he gave up three goals, it’s possible back-up Thatcher Demko starts. Either of the Canuck goalies would be decent GPP targets here as the Canucks have played better than expected and come in with a 9-4-3 record. The Jets also have had issues scoring goals this year, averaging just 2.6 per game while featuring the 10th worst power play. It’s a solid bounce-back spot for whichever Vancouver goalie gets the start.
Value on Defense
Damon Severson ($3,000), NJ at EDM– Severson comes into this game averaging more than 22 minutes of ice over his past four games and, overall, he’s playing around 2:20 minutes per game on the power play for New Jersey. While his peripheral stats aren’t great — averaging only one SOG per game — and he’s gotten off to a slow start this year points-wise, Severson scored 39 points last year and continues to get opportunities for assists. On a small slate, if you need some extreme value, he’s a nice stacking option with almost any of the Devils’ top-six forwards given his playmaking ability, ice time and special teams position.
Darnell Nurse ($4,700), EDM vs. NJ- Nurse enters this game pointless in his past six games but still producing some nice numbers in other categories for fantasy purposes. The Oilers’ D-man is averaging right around two SOG and two blocked shots per game, giving him a good DraftKings scoring floor, despite his early lack of real scoring. We should expect things to pick up soon for Nurse, though, as he still is averaging about a minute of power play time each night and is coming off a 41-point season. The Devils have been a good tonic for many slumping goal-scorers as they’re sporting a 3.62 GAA on the year, making this a nice buy-low spot on Nurse.
Alex Edler ($6,000), VAN at WPG– Edler is in the midst of a kind of revival season and comes into tonight averaging 2.5 SOG per game and just under three blocked shots per game as well. His blocked shots give him solid upside every night, as he’s hit the DK blocked shot bonus in six of his past 10 games now. His scoring has picked up, too, as he’s on pace to set career-highs in that area as well. Edler’s seeing more than three minutes of PP time a night and facing a Jets squad that sports the fourth worst penalty kill. Despite being the most expensive defenseman on the slate, he looks like the best upside play of a small group.
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