The NHL Cheat sheet is your nighty look at some key matchups, fantasy studs, value plays, and important fantasy news and notes for the upcoming slate…
Highest Vegas Totals and Biggest Favorite
Biggest Favorite: The LA Kings are -230 favorites over the Edmonton Oilers
Largest Totals: The Wild/Stars and Blue Jackets/Coyotes have the greatest chance at going over 5.5 goals tonight according to oddsmakers.
Cory Schneider ($6900): Schneider has been in great form lately, posting save percentages of .929 or better in each of his last four games. The Devils have a pretty tough matchup tonight versus Pittsburgh so the win bonus for Schneider might be a bit of a concern, but in general I would not roll the dice tonight with the Penguins skaters. Schneider’s an elite goalie playing on an average team and the Penguins have been pretty disappointing on offense for a big portion of the year. Avoid using skaters against Schneider and consider him as a tournament play in net.
Ryan Miller ($7300): Miller has been sneaky bad of late and has now posted an under .900 save percentage in each of his last four games. The matchup tonight versus the Leafs looks good on paper but I’d definitely avoid using Miller in net. The Canucks have lost 4 of their last 5 games and allowed at least 3 goals in that span. The Leafs aren’t exactly offensive dynamos but make for intriguing targets tonight against the vulnerable Miller. Consider Leaf skaters as tournament targets today.
Artem Anisimov ($4200) – Artemi Panarin ($5300) – Patrick Kane ($8400)
The Chicago scoring line has been on absolute fire the past three games recording over 10 points in their last three games as a line. While Anisimov has been centring this unit at even strength both Kane and Panarin have been mainstays on the PP for Chicago and are both absolutely sniping it at the moment with 5 goals between them in the last two games. While the matchup versus the typically tough STL Blues isn’t great I don’t think this talented trio can legitimately be shut down given their level of play at the moment. Don’t be afraid to use one or all three players tonight as I’d expect at least some production from the league’s hottest trio.
Top Value at Defense
Oliver Ekman-Larsson ($5300): Larsson is pretty much the field general for the Coyotes on the backend, playing in every situation and seeing a ton of PP time. This is great for fantasy since he’s obviously going to be involved in offensive situations and has also been proficient at picking up a few SOG/BS every game. I love the consistency of Ekman-Larsson in fantasy and also love the matchup tonight versus Columbus, one of the worst teams in the league on the PP. He’s got upside at an affordable price and is someone I’d definitely target if paying up on D today.
Kevin Connauton ($2700): I’m leaving in my value pick from last night in this spot. Connauton has been bumped to the first unit PP on Columbus and has been firing away of late, recording 2 or more shots on net in his last three games, good numbers for a D-man. Eventually one of these bombs from Connauton is going to go in and getting him for under 3k is an absolute steal. Until his price rises or his role changes, he’ll be one of the best value plays on DK.
Superstar to Build Lineups Around
Joe Pavelski ($7400): There’s a lot of names you could chose for this slot tonight but when you take into account the matchup (versus Buffalo) and Pavelski’s role (plays in all situations, leads SJ in ice time for forwards) I really like the consistent Pavelski tonight as a cornerstone. Pavelski’s recorded 4 or more shots in 4 of his last 6 games and is still hovering around a PPG average on the year. The Sharks offensive leader should have plenty of room tonight versus the young Sabres and I think a big game is certainly possible and probably here.
Best Value Plays
Leon Draisaitl ($3400): The Oilers second year player has absolutely thrived in a top 6 role since being called up a few games into the season and his price remains ridiculously low considering his recent production and talent level. Draisaitl was a prolific scorer in junior and is now up to 11 points for the Oilers through just 7 games. This is a roll you can continue to ride regardless of matchups as Draisaitl’s price remains well below what it should be.
Vincent Trocheck ($4000): With the Panthers Alex Barkov out for an undisclosed period of time the young Trocheck has been the one to thrive in his absence. Trocheck has been a force on the PP for the Panthers with three PP goals in his last 9 games and seeing more and more ice time with Florida’s top 6 skaters. With so much opportunity Trocheck is a great value play as he’ll be out on PP situations and playing against some softer competition on Florida’s second line. He’s great value today too at only $4000.
Alex Barkov: is still out with a hand injury
Connor McDavid: is out for the Oilers with a shoulder injury
As always hit me up on twitter as @thefantasygrind with lineup questions or other DFS questions GL!