With the nine-game slate, there are several games to look at. The Florida Panthers face the Boston Bruins in what is expected to be one of the highest event games of the night. These are two teams that can shoot the puck a lot. Washington vs. Arizona is another game where scoring should be elevated. Do not sleep on Winnipeg and Chicago.
Los Angeles may appear to be chalky on the surface. Boston has the stronger top ten power play. Nashville and Winnipeg could also experience some moderate to high ownership as (besides Boston and Florida), they both have won five games or more in a row. Florida and Boston have an expected goals of just over six. Watch out for teams on the back end of a back to back. Toronto and Pittsburgh are in that scenario and remember Frederik Andersen is out. Buffalo may be a play as a moderate to high danger GPP option. Risk may be worth the reward but could dud. All prices are from DraftKings.
Top Budget Plays
Adrian Kempe $3100 – The center is a decent play at the least. However, playing against Detroit and some bad road numbers might boost his ownership a fraction. It is tough to roster a player who struggles at times. However, this has value as Kempe has three assists in the last two games. Watch line shifts. Kempe saw top-six minutes in the last game (16 minutes). If he does again, Kempe’s speed could overperform against Detroit’s slower team defense. Christian Dvorak merits a little consideration from the realm of punts.
Artturri Lehkonen $3400 – This is one of the intriguing tournament plays of the night. No one is saying this will work perfectly but Lehkonen is in Florida’s top six. Too many games where he just does not get quality shots on net. When one sees a lot of 0’s, 1’s, and 2’s, that is ominous. However, the last three games, the forward has three goals and at least three shots in each contest. Hopefully, the speed he has shown in flashes lately is seen again. Keep an eye on Danton Heinen and see if he gets an increased role with the Boston injuries.
Erik Gustafsson $3400 –There may be better plays like Alex Goligoski or Nikita Zadorov even, but Gustafsson could be a nice punt play for a low price. His floor is high (shots and blocked shots combined). Risk always exists with value plays, but Gustafsson has points in three of his last four contests. Winnipeg has been stingy at home and yet can give up a few goals. They even have been allowing more shots at home per 60 over the previous month. This may be a chance to sneak a value play in. With the-nine game slate, there is a little more value. Looking towards Montreal and Buffalo may pay dividends.
Robin Lehner $7100 – This is a cheap GPP play but this is a Buffalo team that allows lots of shots on net (more than 34 per 60 overall). The goalie has played well in his last three starts and Toronto is the non-rested team. There is always danger in starting a Buffalo goalie so if Lehner is not on the top of your list. Watch to see who Arizona starts (they are 14-8-6 in their last 28 contests). Does Carter Hutton return for St. Louis? That may be another options to take a look at. Watch morning skates for more information.
Since we saved some money on the budget plays let’s look at the few of the pricey options that are worth paying up for today.
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Vincent Trocheck $6700 – People will run to this as it will be a somewhat chalky play that still has to be used in quite a few lineups. The center has a solid matchup against a Boston team struggling with team defense (18 goals allowed over last five games). Trocheck has a high shot output floor. He will draw bottom-six match-ups and a shaky penalty kill of late. Florida produces high event hockey and will allow it as well. Boston and Florida will have a number of plays. Ryan O’Reilly is a low risk play from the upper echelon of prices at $6200.
Brad Marchand $7200 – Florida yields three goals per game at home and has had some real stinkers in the past against Boston. Marchand will be high owned along with the rest of the top line. His 14 points in the last six games is otherworldly. David Pastrnak can be considered as well. There are a lot of options from the Boston and Florida game including Riley Nash. This is a game that could have hit 6 ½ as far as Vegas over/under. It may still do that.
Dustin Byfuglien $5600 – Again this will be high risk in cash or even GPP’s but Byfuglien is going up against a Chicago team that can get cratered and outmuscled. Byfuglien has had some awful luck this year (five goals on 149 shots). His booming shot has not found the back of the net since the second of the month. He is a bit due there. Roman Josi and Aaron Ekblad are other good plays along with Oliver Ekman-Larson if one is not comfortable with Goligoski. Plenty of defensive options exist for pretty good prices among the first and second tiers of defense.
Jonathan Quick $8200 – There may be better choices, but this has potential to work well. The Los Angeles Kings must keep on winning. Quick bounced back with a 35-save shutout win over Vancouver after getting shelled at home against St. Louis. Detroit has a tough time generating pace at times but Los Angeles has been giving up some more shots lately (33.2 shots over the last dozen contests). Just make sure Quick does start as he was only listed as the probable as of press time.
The Saturday slate features seven games on what will be the main slate. It will also feature a hot match-up between the Boston Bruins and Tampa Bay Lightning. This will feature an expected goals of well over six. A main slate will include an intriguing match-up between Minnesota and Arizona. Boston and Tampa Bay will be a bit tough to fade but it is possible.
Philadelphia and Carolina has probably one of the best top-six match-ups so they may go crazy. It is something to look at, however. San Jose will be a very attractive play in late slates and as a turbo hammer. Watch out for line shifts and some injuries. If one plays the early slate, risk could be high but fun with Edmonton and Florida leading the way.
Chris Wassel has been playing DFS for the past several years and has played Fantasy Hockey for three decades. You can follow him on Twitter @ChrisWasselDFS. Finally, please note that Thursday’s slate has several options. Thanks for reading and enjoy the slate daily fantasy hockey fans!
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