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
– Edmonton Oilers vs. Washington Capitals – 5.5
– Boston Bruins vs. Toronto Maple Leafs – 5.5
– Colorado Avalanche vs. Winnipeg Jets – 5.5
Henrik Lundqvist ($8,200): Lundqvist has been superb this season, and despite his four goals against game on Saturday night against the Panthers he still sits number one in the league in all-three major goaltending categories. He leads the league with a 1.85 GAA and a .943 SV% and sits in a four-way tie for the league lead in wins with 11. He has been fantastic at home posting a 6-1-1 record with a 1.74 GAA and .944 SV% on the Garden ice and faces a Nashville team on Monday night that is averaging only 2.11 goals scored per game on the road this season, good for 25th in the league. Henrik is the most expensive goalie available tonight, so if you want to pay the price he’s the one to go with.
Coach Barry Trotz put this trio together at even strength for the first time this season on Wednesday in an effort to spark Alexander Ovechkin and TJ Oshie’s offense and the move has paid off. In the three games since being moved back up to the top line, Backstrom has points in all three, tallying a goal, three assists and four SOG. Ovechkin, mired in a scoring slump, has points in back-to-back games putting up two goals and an assist on eight shots on goal. Oshie has been in a larger slump than Ovechkin but has found the scoresheet in his last two games as well with an assist in each of his last two. This is a very dynamic line that can create offense very quickly and is guaranteed to put pucks on net so if you can afford to put all three in your lineup do it against Edmonton’s 29th-ranked scoring defense.
Top Upside at Defense
Kevin Shattenkirk ($4,900): Shattenkirk was rusty his first few games back from injury, not recording a point for three games after his return. However he has turned it around in a big way and now has recorded points in five straight games, two multi-point games, and is getting fantastic category coverage over that span with nine blocked shots and 12 SOG. He is manning the point on the Blues top power-play unit and has managed three PPP in his current streak as well. St Louis takes on Buffalo on Monday night making Shattenkirk a great play for your defense.
Shyane Gostisbehere ($2,700): Gostisbehere has not shown an early signs of needing time to adjust to the NHL level. Despite being scoreless his last two games, he has continued to play well with five blocked shots and 10 shots on goal in his first four games. He has shown that he is not afraid to shoot the puck and is manning the point on the Flyers top power-play unit so his chances of seeing production are higher thanks to that. Gostisbehere is averaging 3.1 FPPG a night and Philadelphia has Carolina on Monday in what could be a high scoring matchup, so take a chance for the price and put the impressive rookie in your lineup.
Superstar to Build Lineups Around
Vladimir Tarasenko ($7,900): There were more than one player that was considered here, but Tarasenko has been hot lately and has a great matchup on Monday night against Buffalo. Tarasenko has points in five of his last six games, and in the last four games he has found the scoresheet he has had multi-point outings. In that span he has managed six goals, three assists and has put 17 shots on net. He’s put up 12 points and 43 shots in 11 road games this season and has a matchup against a Buffalo team that is giving up three goals per game at home this year.
Leon Draisaitl ($4,000): Draisaitl keeps on scoring and is out-producing his fantasy value by a wide margin. He has nearly doubled his offensive output from last year (9 points in 37 games) in a quarter of the time (17 points in 10 games this year). He has points in five straight games, including three multi-point outings and has scored in eight of his 10 games so far this season. They have a tough matchup with Washington on Monday, but he and linemate Taylor Hall have managed to find to scoresheet against some stiff competition lately, so roll Draisaitl on Monday night.
Drew Stafford ($3,900): After a long scoreless drought, Stafford has broken out his last two games with two goals, two assists and nine shots on goal. He broke out in a big way Wednesday against Vancouver with three points and eight shots and continued that with an assist over the weekend. He’s skating on the Jets second line and is seeing time on their second power-play unit and with a matchup against the Avalanche’s bottom-five of the league scoring defense.
Ondrej Pavelec ($6,600) Pavelec was injured on Saturday in a collision at the net against Arizona. He reportedly left the arena on crutches so look for Michael Hutchinson to get the nod in net going forward.
Make sure to check out my NHL Line Stacks and NHL Targets posts today before finalizing your lineups. As always for any DFS Hockey questions or comments this season, find me on Twitter at: @JHarding_Hockey