The NHL Cheat Sheet is your quick-hit daily look into the top lines and line changes, fantasy studs, value picks and more to help you navigate your DFS Hockey lineups.
Top Lines of the Night
Washington Capitals vs Carolina Hurricanes
Alex Ovechkin ($8,300) – Nicklas Backstrom ($6,800) – T.J. Oshie ($6,200)
This line has never been more dangerous over the last year and a half than it is right now. Ovie started the season slowly (21 points in 28 games) but he’s been on a tear in the last month with 21 points in his last 18 outings. He has 14 points this month and is riding a seven-game point streak. Backstrom is riding a nine-game point streak that has seen him put up 16 points in January, best in the league this month. He has four goals, 12 assists and five power play points (PPP). Oshie joins Ovechkin with 14 points this month and has 11 of those points in his last six games. The Caps top trio has a combined 68 points at home this season.
Toronto Maple Leafs vs Calgary Flames
James van Riemsdyk ($6,300) – Tyler Bozak ($5,000) – Mitchell Marner ($5,700)
JVR is one of the hottest players in the league, riding a 10-game point streak into tonight’s tilt with the Flames. He has three goals, 11 assists, nine PPP and 27 shots on goal (SOG) on this current run. Bozak and Marner have been equally as good in their last 10 games, both contributing 11 points in that span. Bozak has six goals and seven PPP in those 10 games and Marner has nine assists, with six on the power play (PP). This is one of the top scoring lines in the league at the moment, and the matchup against the Flames is solid.
Superstar to Build Around
Mark Scheifele ($6,600) – Scheifele pushed his point streak to four games, with points in five of his last six, with a multi-point outing on Saturday night against the Blues. The multi-point game was Scheifele’s fourth two-point game in his last 10 games. He has 12 points and four PPP in his last 10 games overall. He could get Patrik Laine back on his line tonight which could only boost his fantasy prospects, but Scheifele has been shouldering the offensive load without missing a beat in his absence.
Value on Offense
Alexander Burmistrov ($3,000) – Burmistrov looks refreshed in his short time in Arizona. The center had two points in 23 games with the Jets this season, but he has three points in his first four games with the Coyotes. All his points are assists, but at $3,000, I think he is a great value flier tonight.
Pavel Buchnevich ($4,700) – Buchnevich had his four-game point streak snapped yesterday against the Red Wings. In his five games since returning from injury, the rookie winger has two goals, four assists and eight SOG. He has nine points in eight home games this season and faces the Kings at the Garden tonight.
Braden Holtby ($8,200) – Despite a second-consecutive rough outing, Holtby pushed his win streak to six games in his last outing. He allowed five goals against the Penguins, taking a no-decision in the contest, and followed that up with a three goals against performance in a win on Thursday. He will get the nod tonight vs the Hurricanes. In his career vs Carolina, Holtby is 9-4-0 with a 1.90 goals against average (GAA) and a .943 save percentage (SV%) in 13 games.
Martin Jones ($8,100) – Jones has won three straight games to push his season total to 24, good for third in the league. The Sharks’ netminder has allowed two goals against in each of the three games against the Jets, Kings and Avs. He faces the Avs again tonight in Colorado, who are averaging 1.88 goals scored per game this month.
Value on Defense
Brady Skjei ($3,400) – Skjei has had an up-and-down season in his first full year in the NHL, but has been solid overall. He has 20 points in 46 games, which is tied for 12th among rookies and is third among rookie defensemen. Skjei has points in back-to-back games, including a multi-point game against the Leafs last Thursday.
Dennis Wideman ($3,300) – Wideman has points in three straight games for the Flames, skating on their second pair with T.J. Brodie. Wideman has an assist in each of the last three games and has added four blocked shots and four SOG. He has tallied 10 FPTS in those games and had a 3.0 FPTS game against Toronto in his prior outing vs them this season.
Power Play Defensemen
Matt Niskanen ($4,800) – With John Carlson still out and not expected back, Niskanen continues to produce. In the four games without Carlson, Niskanen has points in three of them (all multi-point games). He had three assists against the Stars on Saturday, two of them PP assists. He has three PPP in his last three games and will continue to run the Caps’ top PP unit until Carlson returns.
Dustin Byfuglien ($6,300) – Byfuglien is tied for seventh among defensemen in scoring in the league and is third at the position with 148 SOG. He has points in three of his last four games, two of those points coming on the PP. He has two straight multi-point games and has added nine blocks and 16 SOG in these last four games.
Make sure to check out the Cheat Sheet every day, and, as always, for any DFS Hockey questions or comments this season, find me on Twitter at: @JHarding_Hockey.
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is HardingJ2) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above.