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…
**With only one game on Monday we get to pick from both tonight’s games and Tuesdays
Highest Vegas Totals and Biggest Favorite
Biggest Favorite: Anaheim Ducks are -200 favorites over Arizona
Largest Totals: the Ducks/Coyotes have an over/under of 5 and the game lines aren’t out yet for Tuesday.
Stud Goalies (to avoid playing skaters against)
Frederik Anderson ($7000): The Ducks have finally started to get on a roll of late and one of the main reasons has been the play of Anderson. Anderson is riding a 3 game win streak at the moment and hasn’t allowed more than 2 goals in any of those starts. Against the Coyotes who are near the bottom in both shots allowed and shots against in the league Anderson has a great chance at picking up a win and getting your team off to a nice start tonight. Definitely a must consider in net on a slow night.
Dud Goalies (to possibly target skaters against)
Anders Lindback ($6000): The Coyotes will be sending out their backup net minder tonight versus a Ducks squad who is finally getting their offense on track. Lindback has actually been quite solid thus far giving up 2 goals or less in both of his starts. Still Lindback has never proven he can be a consistent every game goalie and against the upstart Ducks I really don’t like this spot for him. The Coyotes have some talent on the back end but it’s still a very young group and they are still giving up a lot of shots ever game. I’d definitely consider taking some of the Ducks skaters against Lindback and the Coyotes.
Ryan Getzlaf ($6700) – Corey Perry ($6900) – Patrick Maroon ($3800)
You can see a trend forming can’t you? The Ducks have been playing well the past week and the main reason for that is that their top line is finally healthy and finally producing. The Ducks got Ryan Getzlaf back after a brief hospitalization (appendix) and ever since he’s returned the Ducks offense has been clicking. Both he and Corey Perry have four points in their last two games and line mate Patrick Maroon is also on a nice point streak as well. Against Arizona I don’t see any need to fade this line as the Ducks need wins to make up for a slow start and can’t afford to rest their top offensive line and go “balanced” in their attack. Get at least some exposure to this line if playing tonight.
Top Upside and Top Value at Defense
Alex Edler ($4700): The Columbus Blue Jackets are second last in the league in killing penalties at the moment and the Canucks, who play Tuesday, will have a great shot at getting some PP production versus them. Edler isn’t off to a huge start but he does have two goals and is a mainstay on the Canuck powerplay where they often choose to centre their attack around his heavy shot. I really like Edler in this matchup and could definitely see him adding to his point total, he’s a good option at a decent price.
Cam Fowler ($3800): Fowler is yet another Duck player you could consider tonight. He’s been playing a lot on the first unit PP, and with Getzlaf and Perry heating up Fowler should also start seeing more production as a result. Fowler is definitely more of an offensive defenseman, and even though he doesn’t have a huge shot he’s great at getting pucks to the net and has over 25 assists in each of his three full seasons with the Ducks. At $3800 he gives you another cheap way to get exposure to the Ducks offense and PP. A solid value play for the matchup he has.
Best Superstar to Build Lineups Around
Nathan MacKinnon ($7500): MacKinnon is sometimes forgotten about because of his youth and the amount of talent Colorado sports up front but he’s an elite player who has been on fire lately. MacKinnon is up to 5 points in his last 3 games and gets a tasty matchup tonight versus the defensively challenged Flyers. The Flyers are giving up an absurd amount of shots against every night (second most in the league) and even though their goaltending has been solid of late it’s still a pretty volatile situation as even a slight drop off from that position could mean a big night for the opposition. I love this spot and the way MacKinnon is playing right now and would peg him for a big night in this matchup.
Best Value Plays to Fill out your lineup with
Lee Stempniak ($3600): The Devils first line has been very productive for their price all year and Stempniak has been a big factor in making that happen. At nearly a ppg pace Stempniak is seeing time alongside two skilled wingers in Adam Henrique and Mike Cammalleri and also getting time on the first unit PP. While the matchup isn’t great, this trio is playing very well so don’t be shocked if you see Stempniak put up another decent night. He has 4 points in his last three games and at $3600 is shockingly cheap for someone in such a good spot offensively on his team.
Jori Lehtera ($3900): With Paul Stastny out Lehtera has been manning the Blues first line with superstar sniper Vladimir Tarasenko and also been seeing a lot of time on the PP too. Lehtera hasn’t put up a ton of points recently but with the Blues having wins in 5 of their last 6 he also hasn’t lost his spot in the top 6 either. Sooner or later you should see a breakout coming from the Finn (who was very effective offensively at times last season) and against NJ, a team who might be a little outmatched in this game, Lehtera could finally find the room to maneuver for some fantasy goodness.
Alex Tanguay: is questionable for Colorado
Rick Nash: is out for the Rangers
As always hit me up on twitter as @thefantasygrind with lineup questions or other DFS questions GL!