It’s trade deadline day in the NHL so it’s very possible that some players in today’s player pool might not be on their teams by tonight. On top of the excitement of deadline day, there are six games on the slate for this evening with some top level players set to hit the ice. Let’s take a look (Keep in mind that any players traded Sunday or today will not be on their new teams’ rosters yet in the DK system, so players like Eric Staal are not available for contests tonight).
Editor’s Note: Antti Raanta will start in place of Henrik Lundqvist tonight.
Henrik Lundqvist ($8,700) – While it could be too late for Lundqvist to get back into the Vezina conversation, he is doing his best to put his name in the discussion. He has been fantastic over his last 10 games, arguably the top goalie in the league since the break, posting an 8-2-0 record and allowing only 17 goals against. To put it in further perspective, eight of the 17 goals came in his two losses in that span. He’s posted two goals or less in each of the eight wins and two shutouts since the start of the month. The Rangers will face the Blue Jackets tonight at home and in two games started vs Columbus this season Lundqvist is 2-0-0 with a 2.00 GAA and .944 SV%. He’s also 19-4-2 on home ice this year. So if you want to spend up for a goalie with a great matchup look no further than tonight’s top netminder.
Andre Vasilevskiy ($7,900) – The Lightning could go with Ben Bishop here ($7,800) but I think they roll Vas tonight after Bishop started four games in the last eight day, including yesterday’s 32-save, one goal against performance in Boston. The Lightning get the Maple Leafs tonight, who are in full-sell mode at the deadline, and Vasilevskiy is a solid play tonight after being recalled from his conditioning stint in the minors. In his previous outing just about a week ago he held the Coyotes to one goal on 30 shots and has won three of his last four starts overall.
Editor’s Note: Martin Jones will start in goal tonight for the San Jose Sharks.
James Reimer ($6,700) – Optimus Reimer has a new home and that home is San Jose. Reimer was traded over the weekend to the Sharks and immediately slots in as Martin Jones’ backup in a playoff in the Pacific division separated by six points. He should get the nod tonight in net for the Sharks after Jones started last night’s game in Vancouver. His numbers began to fall recently thanks to poor play by the Leafs but for a good chunk of the season Reimer was in the top-10 in the league in both GAA and SV%. He is still capable of putting up those kinds of numbers and will be playing with arguably the best defense in front of him, from a talent perspective, that he’s ever had in his career. If he gets the nod tonight, put him in your lineup and save money to use elsewhere.
Others to Consider: Petr Mrazek ($8,000), Marc-Andre Fleury ($8,100), Michal Neuvirth ($7,500)
John Klingberg ($6,400) – Despite slowing down considerably from his scorching pace earlier in the season, Klingberg is still one of the most offensively productive defensemen in the league this season and he has begun to find his scoring ways again with the resurgence of Seguin and Benn. The young puck-mover has nine points, 14 blocks and 20 SOG in his last 10 games and has added four PPPs to boot. He has seen an even split in points on the season with 26 at both home and on the road, but he seems to play more complete games on the road this year with a +14 rating away from home compared to a -4 rating in Dallas. Tonight’s matchup with Detroit is on the road and in his only game against the Wings this season, Klingberg had two assists, one on the PP, and four SOG.
Marc-Edouard Vlasic ($5,200) – I have written about Vlasic a few times this season as a cost-effective option for the Sharks blueline. He has already broken his best career season of 36 points, set seven years ago, with his two points last night against the Canucks. He has five points in his last four games with two multi-points games, and overall he has nine points in his last 10 games. He has also chipped in 14 blocks and 17 shots and is seeing solid power-play time and production with three PPPs in those 10 games. He comes in $1,700 cheaper than defensive partner Brent Burns on the night and there are some more affordable options on defense to partner Vlasic with on your rosters.
Mark Streit ($4,400) – It’s possible that by the time this game starts tonight Streit will not be a Flyer, as his name has been rumored to be on the market for some time now. However if he plays for Philly tonight he is a great mid-level buy. He is on a tear over his last two games with four points, three shots and six blocks. He is coming off one of his best games of the season on Saturday night against the Coyotes posting three assists. He has had a down year thanks to inconsistency and injuries but he is still an above-averaging offensive defenseman who is capable of solid production down the stretch and has a favorable offensive matchup tonight against the Flames.
Andrei Markov ($4,700) – Another defenseman who cooled off substantially this season is Markov, who was one of the hottest defensemen the first month of the season along with stablemate PK Subban. Despite the tough season that the Canadiens have had, Markov has turned on the production lately with nine points in his last 10 games. He is currently riding a five-game point streak with a goal and five assists and, like Streit, is a solid mid-level option tonight for those not looking to spend heavy on defense.
Others to Consider: Brent Burns ($7,900), Oliver Ekman-Larsson ($6,400), Kris Letang ($6,900), Shayne Gostisbehere ($5,800), Keith Yandle ($5,200), Anton Stralman ($4,700), Olli Maatta ($3,800)
Evgeni Malkin ($7,200) – Geno played his first game in almost a month on Saturday posting three SOG and a +2 rating in just over 15 minutes of TOI. It was baby steps for Malkin to get him back into the flow of the game and players should expect him to see more time tonight for the Pens against the Coyotes. He is slotted back on the second line with Phil Kessel, who he showed solid chemistry with earlier this season, and Carl Hagelin. Hagelin seemed to gel with Malkin after he came over in the Perron trade before Malkin got hurt. He is still a point-per-game player this season with 51 points in as many games, and it should not take him long to find his scoring touch once again. Arizona is a great opportunity for that to happen as the Coyotes sit 29th in the league in scoring defense, allowing 3.1 goals against per game.
Tyler Seguin ($8,600) – Seguin and Benn are both must starts for anyone tonight, or any night that is, but I chose Seguin tonight for this article based on his play as of late being slightly better than Benn. He has been on fire this month and has amassed 12 points in his last 10 games after a subpar stretch throughout January. He has four goals, eight assists and 37 shots in those last 10 games. Seguin has points in three straight games (1G, 2A) and is coming off a one assists, seven SOG game against the Rangers on Saturday. He has played well over 21 minutes in his last two games, which is an increase over an game in his last 10, and faces a Red Wings squad tonight that he had a goal and assist against earlier this season.
Brayden Schenn ($5,000) – Schenn has settled in nicely on the left wing for Flyers Captain Claude Giroux this season, and has especially be effective in the month of February. In 14 games this month Schenn has 13 points and is on the cusp of breaking the 40-point barrier for the third-consecutive season, sitting at 39 points right now. He had two assists against the Coyotes on Saturday, his fourth multi-point game this month, and he has five points in his last four outings. He has 23 shots and four PPPs during this current 10 game span that has seen him put up 10 points. The Flyers have a favorable matchup tonight against the Flames and Schenn could have a great chance to finish February with a bang.
Ryan Callahan ($5,000) – If the Lightning knew that Callahan was going to produce the way he has this month, they would have moved him back up to the Stamkos line much sooner. He has been on fire lately with 12 points in his last 10 games, after having 16 points in his first 51 games this year in a mostly bottom-six role. The bulk of his points have come in his last four games with four goals, four assists, 14 SOG and three multi-point games. He had his best game of the season last night against the Bruins posting two goals, one assists and six SOG, with two points on the PP, and is brimming with offensive confidence going into tonight’s matchup with the lowly, and potentially heavy-selling, Maple Leafs.
Shane Doan ($4,600) – It’s possible that Doan could be moved before the deadline today, but if that’s not the case he is a solid start tonight against the Penguins. He has points in three straight games for the Yotes and in four of his last five games overall. He had an assist against the Lightning, followed by a goal and assist against the Panthers, and finished up with an assist on Saturday against the Flyers over the weekend. He is not the player he once was, but he still is effective and with Arizona shuffling their lines, especially if there are trades later today, Doan could easily find himself back in the top-six forward rotation. Keep an eye on his lineup status during the day.
Others to Consider: Johnny Gaudreau ($7,300), Jamie Benn ($8,300), Sidney Crosby ($7,800), Joe Pavelski ($7,300), Steven Stamkos ($7,200), Claude Giroux ($7,100), Phil Kessel ($6,900), Max Pacioretty ($6,900), Nikita Kucherov ($6,600), Patrick Sharp ($6,500), Sean Monahan ($5,900), Derick Brassard ($5,500), Brandon Saad ($5,400), Tomas Tatar ($4,800), Alex Killorn ($4,300), Carl Hagelin ($4,200), Alex Wennberg ($3,800), Brad Boyes ($3,100)
Make sure to check out the Cheat Sheet and NHL Line Stacks posts today and as always for any DFS Hockey questions or comments this season, find me on Twitter at: @JHarding_Hockey