This last Friday before the trade-deadline brings us a solid seven-game slate. The struggling Islanders get a fantastic get-right spot tonight as they’ll be at home against the Red Wings, while the injury-laden Oilers, who are still without Oscar Klefbom and Conner McDavid, are at home taking on Minnesota. There aren’t many last-minute injury-issues to take note of tonight, with Cam Fowler of the Ducks perhaps being the biggest name to keep an eye on. The Ducks host the Avalanche tonight and Fowler was scratched late on Wednesday with an injury right before puck drop.
TOP OPTIONS TO CONSIDER
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Top Line Stacks
Islanders vs. Red WingsMathew Barzal ($6,000) – Jordan Eberle ($5,100) – Anders Lee ($5,700)
The Islanders have been pathetic offensively of late, scoring just two goals now in their last four games. Detroit is a fantastic opponent though, and I’d be on the lookout for some of their stars to break out of their hellish slumps tonight. While players like Brock Nelson ($5,700) or Ryan Pulock ($5,600) could be sneaky targets, I like going with the Islanders full L1 stack here. Despite their lack of scoring, this line is playing big minutes with all three forwards averaging well over 20 minutes now over their last two games. Detroit’s penalty-kill remains the third-worst unit in the league and it’s worth noting that while the Wings have been bad the entire year, they’ve really been terrible on the road where they have just five wins on the season. This trio should stick together at even strength and on the power-play so the correlation possibilities are strong if an offensive breakout occurs. The matchup and prices on these three are right to take a shot here.
Superstar to TargetSebastian Aho ($7,500), CAR vs. NYR – Aho comes into this game on an incredible stretch of offensive production as he’s now piled up 10 goals and 16 points over his last 10 games. The Carolina center started the season slowly but is already up to 34 goals scored and gets a solid matchup here for another big night against the Rangers, who allow the second-most shots on goal (SOG) per game in the league. New York has played well of late, but this is a big game for Carolina a team that is clinging to the last playoff spot in the East and comes in having scored four or more goals in five of its last six games. Aho’s been producing elite numbers for a while now yet remains as just the seventh-most expensive player on this slate, despite the plus matchup. He’s a great anchor play for this Friday.
Value on OffenseMikael Backlund ($4,300), CAL vs. BOS – Backlund has been on a solid run of late for the Flames, recording nine points now in his last seven games, and has played over 18 minutes in three of his last four starts as well. The second-line center has been a driving force for the Flames of late and comes in averaging a solid three SOG per game now in his last 10 starts. The Bruins are a tough matchup but, given the fact his price still sits below $4.5K on DraftKings, this is still a fine time to target Backlund as he’s trending upwards in pretty much every offensive category at the moment.
Kyle Turris ($3,900), NAS at CHI – Turris has shown life of late for the Predators and he comes into tonights plus matchup with the Blackhawks having landed eight points now in his last 10 starts. Playing on a line alongside Filip Forsberg ($6,200) and Matt Duchene ($4,900), the matchup here for this trio looks ripe for some decent production tonight. Chicago has allowed the most SOG per game of any team in the league and has the 10th-worst GAA in the league. Turris is an easy, cheap way to get exposure to the Nashville top-6, and PP1, as he’s been playing in a lot of man-advantage situations lately for the Predators.
Stud GoaliesPetr Mrazek ($8,000), CAR vs. NYR – Mrazek has played well of late for the Hurricanes. Having posted wins in two straight games, the Czech netminder has also now stopped 63 of the last 67 shots he’s faced. Carolina enters this game in a tight race for the last couple playoff spots and sits as -160 favorites as of writing on the money-line tonight, making Mzarek a great candidate to hit the win bonus. Carolina doesn’t typically allow a ton of shots against, but it’s worth noting that Mrazek has been a bit busier than usual of late, having faced 36 or more SOG in three of his last five starts. It’s a solid upside spot to take advantage on a slate with few good cheap options to turn to in net.
Tuukka Rask ($7,900), BOS at CAL – Like Mrazek, Rask isn’t super cheap, but his recent play and solid matchup make him a good upper-tier value, nonetheless. Rask enters this game averaging 20.6 DKFP over his last 10 appearances and has only allowed one goal against in each of his last three starts. The Flames offense has been stellar of late but they also present as a good upside opponent for Rask as they’ve been getting a lot of rubber on net of late and rank 12th in the league in SOG per game. With Boston set as -145 favorites as of writing, it’s a solid spot to deploy Rask in GPPs.
Value on DefenseSamuel Girard ($3,500), COL at ANH – Girard looks like a solid upside play tonight as the Avalanche travel to Anaheim to take on the lowly Ducks. Averaging over two minutes a night on the power-play, Girard has shown he’s capable of producing some bigger games when the conditions are right and the Ducks featuring the ninth-worst penalty-kill in the league makes this a great matchup for a possible breakout. On top of his power-play exposure, Girard enters this game having played over 20 minutes a game now in his last three outings and is averaging 1.5 blocked shots over his last 10 games as well. Girard is averaging .50 point per game and simply looks too cheap considering his upside is undoubtedly heightened here against one of the better opponents in hockey for an offensive-minded defenseman like himself.
Power-Play DefensemenDarnell Nurse ($6,200), EDM vs. MIN – Nurse played heavy minutes in the Oilers’ first game without Oscar Klefbom, skating for 29 minutes against the Bruins in an OT loss. Nurse ended that game with 15.5 DKFP yet didn’t record a point on the official scoresheet. He did manage to block five shots, however, and also just missed the SOG bonus, recording four SOG on the night. The Oilers will be relying heavily on Nurse going forward and he’s got a great matchup tonight to perhaps post his first big breakout game in his new role, as the Wild have the fourth-worst penalty-kill in the league and have the ninth-worst GAA in the league. Nurse is a solid pay-up candidate here and should keep pushing for big production until Klefbom returns.
Torey Krug ($5,900), BOS at CAL – Krug has proven to have a solid fantasy floor of late, as he’s averaged three SOG over his last 10 games, and even chipped in with 1.1 blocked shots per game over this same span. His real value comes as being the QB of the second-best power-play in the league and often posts huge upside nights when he actually finds the back of the net. The Flames goaltending has been awful of late, and while they have an above-average penalty-kill, the fact they’ve allowed four or more goals now in three of their last four games is alarming. It’s a good spot to deploy Krug with any one of Boston’s big three forwards.
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