The NHL Cheat Sheet is your quick-hit daily look into odds, fantasy studs, value picks, and more to help you navigate your DFS Hockey lineups.
Highest Vegas Totals
– Ottawa Senators vs. Boston Bruins – 5.5
– Chicago Blackhawks vs. Arizona Coyotes – 5.5
– Anaheim Ducks vs. Calgary Flames – 5.5
Roberto Luongo ($8,100): Don’t look now but the Panthers are one of the hottest teams in the league and have jumped all the way to first place in the Atlantic Division and are riding a six-game winning streak. Luongo has been a large part of that and is riding his own winning streak, this one five games. In that span he has allowed only eight goals against and taken down quality offenses in the Islanders, Canucks and Senators. He gets the Canadiens tonight, who are on the second night of a back-to-back after a hard-fought game last night against Tampa Bay, and is my top goalie of the night so ride the streak and put Luongo in your lineups.
Top Line of the Night
Johnny Gaudreau ($7,000) – Sean Monahan ($5,800) – Jiri Hudler ($4,400)
This line is beginning to come alive for the Flames thanks in large part to the offensive explosion that we have seen recently from Gaudreau. “Johnny Hockey” has been the best scorer in the league as of late with 17 points in his last 10 games, besting the likes of Benn, Seguin, Kane, Hall and Tarasenko in that time span. Gaudreau has five multi-point games in his current scoring run and is now up to 39 points on the season (T-6th in the league). Monahan has been a solid compliment to Gaudreau as of late with nine points in his last 10 outings. Hudler has had some inconsistencies this season with his offense but has five points in his last 10 games and is currently riding a three-game point streak. This line has been very potent as of late and have a favorable matchup with the struggling Ducks tonight at home. At the Saddledome this season this line has produced 56 points and at a salary hit of $17,200 they are an affordable line stack trio.
Top Upside at Defense
Justin Faulk ($6,300): Faulk continues to be one of the best all-around defensemen in the NHL and with a goal on Sunday against Chicago he became the fourth defenseman in the league this season to hit the 30-point plateau. He leads the Hurricanes in all major scoring categories, as well as power-play points (15) and 107 SOG. In addition to his offensive stats he also has amassed 42 blocked shots this season in 36 games. He’s the third-most expensive option on defense but has a favorable matchup against the Devils and Cory Schneider, who has allowed 11 goals against in his last four starts.
Alex Goligoski ($4,400): Overshadowed by the superstar tandem on their front line, and the superb offensive season from defensive mate John Klingberg, Goligoski has had a solid season and has points in four of his last five games. On the season Goligoski has three goals and 16 points in 37 games and is seeing production at both even strength and on the power-play (four PPP). Take advantage of the inexpensive salary and the recent offensive outburst and put him in your lineup tonight.
Superstar to Build Lineups Around
Jamie Benn ($8,500): Benn has been one of the most consistent point producers over the last two seasons and now sits only a point behind Patrick Kane for the league lead in points. Benn’s 49 points on the year in only 37 games are putting him on pace for 100+ points and, aside from Gaudreau, he has been the most prolific scorer in the league in his last 10 games with 14 points. Benn is currently riding a five-game scoring streak, has points in eight of his last 10, and is coming off a multi-point effort against the Blues on Sunday. Benn and the Stars face their former division rival Columbus on Tuesday night and in 19 career games against the Blue Jackets Benn has 16 points, including an assist against Columbus two weeks ago.
Mike Ribeiro ($3,500): Ribeiro has quietly put up a solid 21 points this season for the sometimes offensively challenged Predators. Ribeiro has been put back on a line with Filip Forsberg and the two have found their chemistry from last season. Ribeiro had another great outing last night racking up three assists against the Rangers in the Predators 5-3 win and has now put up points in four straight games. With the level of production as of late and his now salary playing in a top-line role, find a way to get Ribeiro into your lineups tonight despite the tough matchup against the Blues.
Alexander Wennberg ($3,300): Wennberg has come on as a strong offensive contributor for the struggling Blue Jackets and the former first round pick is settling in nicely on the Columbus second line with Scott Hartnell and Brandon Saad. After a 20 point season last year in 68 games, Wennberg has 13 points in only 26 games this year and has 10 points in his last 10 games, including three on the man advantage. He has points in three straight games and five of his last six games overall and at $3,300 deserves a strong look as a value play for your lineups tonight going against Dallas in what could easily turn into a high-scoring affair.
Jaroslav Halak ($7,500) The Islanders placed Halak on IR over the weekend after revealing he was dealing with an upper-body injury. It was retroactive to Dec. 21, so Halak is able to be taken off IR, but it remains to be seen what the Islanders do. Monitor this as Halak could be taken off to start against Toronto tonight, or the Islanders will once again roll with Thomas Greiss in net.
Jeff Carter ($6,200) After leaving Saturday’s game early with an injury, Carter missed last night’s contest against Vancouver. His status for tonight is unknown so monitor this during the day if you are considering him for your lineups against the Oilers.
Make sure to check out my Targets and NHL Line Stacks posts today and as always for any DFS Hockey questions or comments this season, find me on Twitter at: @JHarding_Hockey