We have a very intriguing four-game slate for this Valentine’s Day with lots of big GPPs in the DraftKings lobby. On the news front, there are two big names who are questionable for tonight’s games. Blake Wheeler (illness) may not suit up for Winnipeg as they host the Sharks and Thomas Tatar (hand) also looks highly questionable for the Canadians in their road game against the Penguins. The Rangers travel to Columbus tonight while the Devils have a tough matchup against the Hurricanes in Carolina.
TOP NHL TARGETS FOR FRIDAY’S SLATE
Top Line Stacks
Hurricanes vs. Devils
Sebastian Aho ($7,100) – Andrei Svechnikov ($5,900) – Teuvo Teravainen ($5,500)
The Carolina first line comes into this game with the Devils on a tear, having scored 16 points between them in their past four games. All of the three have contributed to this surge, but Sebastian Aho has been the main catalyst and comes into this game with seven goals in his past six games. Despite the big production of late, the three all remain relatively affordable and make for a great stacking target given the fact they are one of the true L1s in the league that play together full-time at even strength and on the power play, which gives them great correlation for DFS purposes. The Devils have received solid goaltending of late from MacKenzie Blackwood ($7,000), but come into Carolina tonight on the tail-end of a back-to-back. It’s a solid matchup for the Hurricanes’ top-line as N.J. still sits with the second-worst GAA in the league despite their improved play defensively of late.
Superstar to Target
Patrik Laine ($7,500), WPG vs. SJS – Laine has been creeping up in the goal-scoring category of late and enters this game with 24 goals on the season and nine in his past 10 games. A streaky scorer, there’s little reason to get off the Laine train tonight as the Sharks have consistently been one of the worst teams five on five in the league this year. San Jose has now allowed three or more goals in seven of their past nine games and still posses the sixth-worst GAA average in the league. While Laine’s line-mate Kyle Connor ($6,900) is also an option here the Finn has been far more aggressive with his shot than Conner of late and comes in averaging 4.1 SOG in his past 10 games. With San Jose’s struggles on defense, and Laine’s recent form, there’s every chance we see a slate-breaking type of performance from the electric goal-scorer here as he comes in averaging 16.2 DKFP over his past 10 starts.
Value on Offense
Pavel Zacha ($3,400), NJD at CAR – Zacha remains a quality value option in DFS most nights and could be in line for a big workload against the Hurricanes. With NJ’s first-line struggling, the Devils should be looking to rely more on Zacha’s two-way ability here against a Hurricanes offense which has been scoring in bunches of late. Having played over 18 minutes per game in three of his past four outings while also recording three or more SOG in three of his past four games as well, the Russian remains one of the best value options at forwards when priced this low. He has also shown quality upside of late by producing three games with 14 or more DKFP in his past seven outings.
Andrew Copp ($3,500), WPG vs. SJS – Copp has been a strong producer for the Jets over the past month or so. The center generally anchors the Jets’ third line, but also sees power play time with the Jets’ second unit and has seen his role grow to the point where he’s now played over 18 minutes in three of his past four games. Copp has also found the net now in three of his past six games and could be pushed into a more offensive role tonight for the Jets as center Blake Wheeler ($6,000) is questionable to play. Regardless of what line he plays on, Copp’s versatility has made him a solid fantasy producer of late and he remains quality value in DFS here at well under 4k.
Igor Shesterkin ($7,300)/Henrik Lundqvist ($7,500), NYR at CLB – The Rangers’ goalie situation is a spot to watch tonight as newly named No. 1 Shesterkin is questionable with an ankle issue. Shesterkin sat out last night’s game and if he can’t go its likely that Henrik Lundqvist would get the start. Lundqvist is definitely a downgrade from Shesterkin — who had won four games in a row before getting injured — but would still be a value option to consider as the Rangers enter this game with Columbus as small road underdogs and with better odds to win than any other road team on the slate. On a slate devoid of good cheap options in net, whoever starts for the Rangers may provide the best value.
Connor Hellebuyck ($8,000), WPG vs. SJS – Hellebuyck has been a bit up and down for Winnipeg this season, but two of his past four starts have produced quality upside totals for fantasy purposes. The Jets aren’t a great team defensively but that has led to some big nights for Hellebuyck, who has hit the DK save bonus on two of his past five games. The Jets also enter this game as -152 favorites (as of writing) on DK Sportsbook, so we could easily see Hellebuyck push for both DraftKings goalie bonuses on this slate. He’s played well enough recently to make him a solid GPP target here in a game that many will be expecting to push for the highest goal-scoring total of the night.
Value on Defense
Jake Gardiner ($3,000), CAR vs. NJD – Gardiner has started to come on over the past couple of weeks, as he’s now collected five assists over his past five games. The former Leaf hasn’t flourished in Carolina like some thought he might, but he’s still seeing around 20 minutes of ice time per night and averaging 1 minute and 40 seconds per night on the power play. With the Hurricanes still without Dougie Hamilton, expect Gardiner to continue to see ample power play minutes for the time being, a role which makes him a solid upside target at just $3K tonight against the Devils. New Jersey comes in off a game last night and, while they have improved immensely over the past month or so, the Devils still make for a solid matchup for Carolina’s special team players.
Brent Burns ($7,000), SJS at WPG – Burns has been picking up the pace offensively of late for the Sharks and it’s, of course, made him a more reliable fantasy producer because of it. The former Norris trophy winner comes into tonight’s game with the Jets averaging 13.8 DKFP over his past 10 games, which is two full points above his season average. He’s now averaging 3.3 SOG and over two blocked shots per night over his past 10 games and is in a great spot for a ceiling type game against the Jets tonight who allow the sixth-most SOG per game and feature the third-worst power-play in the league. Burns has power play points in two straight games and could easily push for a big game tonight.
Zach Werenski ($5,700), CLB vs. NYR – Werenski may not bring quite the upside that Burns does as he’s only averaging 10.9 DKFP on the season. But he’s aggressive shot-taker for a point man, coming in having achieved the DraftKings SOG bonus in three of his past four outings. A power play specialist, Werenski has scored 33% of his points on the PP this year and faces off against a Rangers team who has the 11th-worst penalty-kill in the league and allow the second-most SOG per game. If you’re looking to save cash off the top players at defense, Werenski still offers extreme upside in a premium matchup against the Rangers.
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