The NHL season is ramping up for playoffs and as such, teams are becoming a little more predictable. With nearly a full season sample size, it is clear to determine which routes to take when stacking a DraftKings or FanDuel lineup.
For those who are looking to get into NHL for their first time, the mentality and game theory is quite similar to MLB, when talking about DFS. Choosing a goalie is a lot like selecting a pitcher. The win is imperative. It is important to stack lines to double dip in goals and assists. Just like in baseball, stacking consecutive batters will correlate to an increase in point production from RBI’s, runs, home runs, etc.
Tonight, there is a nice seven-game slate, with interesting matchups. There are a few games with high projected goal totals which are perfect for stacking. Let’s take a look at some of the top options on the night.
Steven Stamkos (TB): $8,700 (FD) / $7,600 (DK) vs. OTT
The Tampa Bay Lightning is the best team in the NHL and has the best offensive duo. They are a heavy favorite going up against a weak Senators team who will be playing in their second game in as many nights. Generally, when playing a back-to-back, teams are a little more sloppy and careless when taking penalties. The Lightning should thrive on the man advantage tonight. Stamkos will be the main beneficiary. Although expensive to fit during lineup construction, tonight is a tough fade in any format.
Kyle Turris (NSH): $5,100 (FD) / $4,800 (DK) vs. WPG
This game could quite possibly be a future playoff matchup in May. Two of the top teams in the Western Conference will face-off tonight in what should be a high-scoring affair. These teams met less than a month ago which ended up being a 6-5 victory for the Predators. Much of the same should be expected tonight in Nashville. Kyle Turris is at a bit of a discount. Centering the second forward line and power-play unit, Turris will have ample opportunity to find the back of the net. The Jets are a great team but have shown cracks in the armor on the road.
Nikita Kucherov (TB): $8,900 (FD) / $8,000 (DK) vs. OTT
The NHL’s leading scorer is also in the conversation for the Hart trophy this season as the MVP. With Evgeni Malkin and Connor McDavid closing the scoring race gap, Kucherov will be motivated to score the rest of the season. The Ottawa Senators are ranked 28th in the NHL in CF% (Corsi For percentage), and 29th in GA (Goals Allowed) during even strength. As we know, the Lighting are a dynamic offense and will look to shred a tired Sens team. Kucherov is the second piece to an expensive mini stack tonight.
Craig Smith (NSH): $5,500 (FD) / $5,300 (DK) vs. WPG
The second part of a Predators stack is Craig Smith. Unlike Kyle Turris, Craig Smith will skate on the top power-play unit. In this case, we will get exposure to the top six forwards on Nashville. Viktor Arvidsson, Filip Forsberg, and Ryan Johansen all correlate together on the top line. The game will see a lot of goals, thus getting as much exposure to each team will be key.
Kevin Fiala (NSH): $4,800 (FD) / $5,000 (DK) vs. WPG
The third member of the Predators to look at is Kevin Fiala. The second line on Nashville is priced at a point where we can fit in top end studs as well. If this line scores just one goal, they will pay off value to cash. They should also go overlooked in tournaments with so many other options. Fiala has scored 42 points on the season and has found a lot of chemistry with his linemates. The Winnipeg Jets are dealing with numerous injuries on their roster. Although still a good team with depth, Nashville should win this game and they will need as much offense as possible.
Ryan Ellis (NSH): $5,500 (FD) / $5,700 (DK) vs. WPG
Finally, the last piece of the Nashville stack. Ryan Ellis. This defenseman has one of the hardest shots in the NHL and uses it a lot. He will play on the second power-play unit which correlates with the forwards listed above. Known as an offensive defenseman, Ellis is a great puck-moving D-man and chips in on assists often. He will play a lot of minutes which is what we look for. More opportunity for blocked shots as well.
Josh Morrissey (WPG): $3,900 (FD) / $3,400 (DK) @ NSH
With Jacob Trouba still on the DL, Josh Morrissey is getting plenty of ice-time. Although not on the power-play, Morrissey logs a lot of time on the top defensive pairing. His box score won’t jump out as anything special, but this is a great spot for a punt play. His shots on goal and blocked shots will give him a decent floor tonight in what will be a high-event game. We don’t need a lot from him to pay off value which makes him a great cash game play.
Jack Campbell (LA): $7,300 (FD) / $8,200 (DK) @ ARI
It is not always reassuring to start a goalie on the road, especially a goalie with just one NHL game under his belt this season. However, the Kings are a great defensive team and will play a very poor offensive team in the Coyotes. On the year, Arizona is ranked 30th in GF (Goals For). This should be an extremely boring, low scoring game. Campbell is not the heaviest favorite on the board tonight, but at that price on FanDuel, just getting the win will pay off value. On DraftKings, going in another direction might be a better option.
Always be sure to double check which goalies are confirmed to start before locking in your lineup. https://www.dailyfaceoff.com/ is a great site to see line combinations and starting goalies.