With five NHL games on tap for this second-to-last day of 2015 DK players will have a decent-sized player pool for tonight’s slate of hockey action. There are some big names available on the line stacks front so let’s take a look.
Alex Ovechkin ($8,800) – Nicklas Backstrom ($6,200) – T.J. Oshie ($5,800)
Washington’s top line was my line of the night on the Cheat Sheet today and they are a solid play tonight against Buffalo after they combined for one of the Capitals two goals in Monday’s win against the Sabres. Ovechkin netted his 18th goal of the season on Monday off a feed from Backstrom. Oshie picked up the secondary assist on that goal. It was Ovie’s first goal in three games and gives him 31 points in 34 games to go along with a league-leading 168 SOG. Backstrom checks in as the seventh-most expensive center available on Wednesday night even though he has the second-most points of all centers on the night with 32. He has managed to put up 10 points in his last 10 games for Washington. Oshie has seen his inconsistencies this season, but he managed that assist on Monday which snapped a three-game pointless streak and with 23 points in 35 games he’s on pace right now to challenge the 55 point season he managed last year in St. Louis. This line is capable of putting up offense quickly and in a favorable matchup like this, they should be looked at heavily for your lineup.
Mike Hoffman ($5,900) – Bobby Ryan ($5,500) – Mika Zibanejad ($4,400)
Hoffman has been one of the more under-the-radar players this year and it might surprise a lot of people that he is top-five in the league in goals scored with 18 (tied with Joe Pavelski). Hoffman has put up points in five of his last seven games and he and Ryan have formed a great chemistry this season with or without Kyle Turris, who has been moved down to the second line center for the time being to spread out the scoring. Ryan has been held pointless in three of his last four games but he has been nearly a point-per-game player this season with 33 points in 36 games and has seven points in his last nine contests playing alongside Hoffman. Zibanejad has been bumped up to this line for the moment and has points in three straight games, including goals in back-to-back games against the Bruins this week. The Sens face Cory Schneider and the Devils at home tonight where they are averaging almost three goals per game this season, and Schneider has allowed 11 goals against in his last four starts, with three of those coming on the road.
Jakub Voracek ($6,000) – Wayne Simmonds ($5,300) – Sean Couturier ($3,500)
This line has been highly productive and a pleasant surprise for the Flyers as of late. After setting the league on fire last season with his scoring outburst, Voracek struggled mightily this season to match those numbers early in the year with Claude Giroux. After netting only 13 points in his first 25 games Voracek now has 11 points in his last 10 while consistently averaging around three shots on goal per game on the season. Simmonds had a multi-goal game last week against the Blues and has three points in his last four games. Couturier is the surprise on this line with six points scored in his last five games bringing his total up to 14 on the season. Mostly buried in a third-line role, he’s seeing more offensive responsibility and production opportunities playing with two solid playmakers in Voracek and Simmonds. The Flyers have a favorable matchup against the Sharks who have slipped to 24th in the league in GAA and as a team have allowed 21 goals against in their last five games.
James van Riemsdyk ($6,200) – Tyler Bozak ($4,200) – PA Parenteau ($3,700)
Another line that has been scorching since it was put together is the Maple Leafs top trio. I wrote about JVR yesterday on my targets article and with his assist last night against the Isles he pushed his points streak to four games and now has put up 10 points in his last seven games. Parenteau netted a goal against the Islanders last night, assisted on by JVR, and is also riding a four-game point streak and has found the scoresheet in nine of his last 10 games. Bozak was blanked last night against the Islanders but has been highly productive since being reunited with JVR and has five goals and five assists over his last 10 game span. This line has a chance to make a lot of noise and do some damage offensively tonight against the struggling Penguins, despite the solid play of their rookie netminder Matt Murray.
Joe Pavelski ($7,500) – Joe Thornton ($4,800)
I wrote about Pavelski in today’s Cheat Sheet as my superstar to build your lineup around. He’s 10th in the league in scoring with 36 points, fifth in the league with 18 goals and from a FPPG perspective is the best available center playing tonight at 4.4 FPPG. He has 10 points, five power-play points, 16 shots on goal and has added four blocks in his last six games. Thornton has rounded back into form in December after slipping majorly in his production in November. Thornton, always one of the most consistent assist men in the league, is riding a six-game point streak that has seen him rack up two goals and six assists while centering Pavelski. They are a great duo to stack together tonight, especially with a looming matchup with the Flyers makes him an excellent play tonight. This duo has done some damage against the Flyers in their careers with Pavelski having 10 points in 11 career games and Thornton with 30 points in 37 career matchups. At an average cap hit of $6,150 each these two won’t break the bank to put in your lineups tonight.
Make sure to check out my NHL Cheat Sheet and Pete Jensen’s NHL Targets posts today before finalizing your lineups. Have a safe and happy New Year’s Eve and as always for any DFS Hockey questions or comments this season, find me on Twitter at: @JHarding_Hockey