NHL Hall of Fame - Lesson 03 - Tournament Strategy

In this article I am going to give you my strategies for building a winning lineup for all Daily Fantasy Hockey GPPs (guaranteed prize pool). GPPs are a general term used across the industry for your big money/large field tournaments.

GPPs are very different from your cash games. In our GPPs we are not interested in safe plays. GPPs are all about UPSIDE. We want players who can explode; all-or-nothing players can become GPP gold. You need your players to have huge nights in order to take down these big tournaments. Value players are just as important as your star players.

Goaltending

More often than not, you are looking for value when picking out a GPP goalie. If you can afford a stud netminder and get the offense you want, fantastic. However, most nights you will not be able to afford a loaded offense with an expensive, stud goaltender.

Some teams have strong back-up goalies that make great value plays. Sometimes it is a rookie in a great spot, or it can simply be a solid goalie who has struggled recently, whose salary has been reduced. All of these options give us goaltending at a lower cost than the studs, and it will allow more salary to be spent on our offense.

Forwards

There are many ways to strategize for a GPP. I will list three options below in which I have found to be the most successful.

NHL: Boston Bruins at Tampa Bay Lightning

GPP Option # 1 – “Two Line Stack”: In this option, you would take the top scoring line from two separate teams that you think are in a great spot to produce that evening. For example, if we think both Team A and Team B are going to have big nights, we would take Team A’s top offensive line and combine it with Team B’s top offensive line. We want to find options where both lines play together at even strength and also represent their team’s number one power play unit. If both lines happen to go off, you are looking at a very successful night. Even if one line goes off and the other just chips in, you should be able to make a profit.

GPP Option # 2 – “One Line Stack”: For this stack, you simply take one line you love that plays together at even strength and also sees plenty of power play time. Say we stack Team A’s top line because we expect them to score a few goals. We will then add 3 other forwards. The key here is upside, we want 3 guys that are all capable of putting together a massive night. They don’t have to be all-stars, but they must have multi-point options with price tags that won’t break the bank. Assuming our Team A line scores 2-3 goals, we don’t need all three of our single player additions to score. If one or two of them score, we are looking at a big night. The key is setting our team up with three single players that can light up the score sheet. If all three additions score, we are taking down a big tournament. Cha $ Ching!

GPP Option # 3 – “Three Team Stack”: Here is where we are looking to stack the two top players from three different teams. Let’s say we love Team A, Team B, and Team C on a particular night. We would take two players form each of those teams’ top lines, and we should roster all six forwards as a three team stack. In this case, if all three lines score, we are definitely cashing in big time. However, even if just two of those three lines have a productive night, we should still come away with a winning lineup.

Defensemen

When picking out our GPP defensemen, again, you want high ceiling upside. Whether we are paying up for a stud or looking for a value play, they need to have upside.

NHL: Toronto Maple Leafs at Ottawa Senators

GPP Option # 1 – “Two Line Stack”: Going back to our team that we started building for option #1, for defensemen, ideally, we would want Team A’s and Team B’s power play quarterbacks, making it a full, two team stack. However, we might not be able to afford to do that. If that is the case, look for value on their teams, and try to find inexpensive defensemen that get some power play.

GPP Option # 2 – “One Line Stack”: Going back to our team we started building for option #2, for defensemen we definitely want a power play defenseman from Team A to go along with our Team A scoring line. As far as the other defenseman go, we just want potential for a big game. Rolling the dice on a value-priced defensemen, who has upside, is a great way to go.

GPP Option # 3 – “Three Team Stack”: To finalize our GPP roster with defense, we want to add defensemen who fit into our salary cap from the same teams we stacked our forwards from (in this example – Team A, Team B, and Team C). There should be plenty of options that work with three teams involved.

Conclusion

Some people prefer not to stack a line at all in tournaments, and this is acceptable as well. However, I have found that stacking using one of the options mentioned above has been the most successful. You are generating so many points each time your line scores, and it is rare to see an unassisted goal in hockey. Whether it is at even strength or on the power play, you are likely getting two or three of your players involved every time your line scores, and that is how you jump up the leaderboard. Stack away!

You now you have three different options when you decide to enter your GPPs, and hopefully my advice will help you take down one of these large field tournaments.