Daily Fantasy Hockey Strategy: February 2, 2016
Welcome back! The John Scott Experience is over, and NHL DFS makes it’s glorious return this evening with a gluttonous 12-game slate. Before we dive into it, I want to introduce you to our newest sponsor, FantasyDraft.com. We’ll work in some FantasyDraft analysis/rankings here in the hockey section from time to time, so if you’d like to play there, we have you covered. If you sign up through our referral link and deposit $20 or more into your account, we’d be overly grateful. And we’ll try to make it worth your while with solid advice.
And now to the meat of the post….
Below I’ve got a discussion of the best matchups and potential stacks of the day followed by player rankings for Tuesday’s 12-game slate of NHL contests around the industry. At the bottom of the post I’ve embedded my research chart for the day. Here is just a snippet of an old chart I’ll use to explain what you’re looking at.
First the colors. Purple/blue is amazeballs, green is great, yellow is good, orange is bad, red is awful and deep red is no effing way.
The first column that isn’t self-explanatory is the sixth one, the one that is titled ‘z’ to the right of salary. That is how far above or below average the player’s salary is compared to all other players in action today. ‘Proj.’ is a projection from my own Marcel-like projections. The ‘z’ next to the projection is how far above or below average the projection is compared to all other players in action today. And then ‘Value’ is the projection z-score minus the player’s salary z-score.
All shot attempt numbers discussed are at even strength, score-adjusted and weighted for recent performance unless otherwise noted.
And as always, make sure to check Twitter for any injury news, and check LeftWingLock for starting goalies and line combos.
Teams to Target
Chicago on the road in Colorado
At the break, no team had allowed more shot attempts per 60 than Colorado, and Calvin Pickard continues to draw starts while Semyon Varlamov deals with a trial in a lawsuit filed against him by a former girlfriend. The Hawks are obviously in a good spot here and figure to be a popular play tonight.
The “second” line centered by Artem Anisimov has been Chicago’s most productive line offensively all year, making them the obvious choice. And with Jonathan Toews having to sit this one out after sitting out the All-Star game, the second line seems even more obvious. But the fact that they’re such an obvious play is one reason to perhaps avoid them. The other is that Colorado’s top line is a solid possession trio that seems likely to match up with that Anisimiov line with Toews out of the picture.
Patrick Kane is expensive on every site, but he’s not so expensive that you can easily pass him up in cash games. Passing on him and the whole line in GPPs is fine, but it’s tough to fade him in cash. The same goes for Artemi Panarin, who is much more affordable. And Anisimov is even a bit more affordable. Rostering either Panarin or Anisimov in cash could be enough exposure to Kane for cash game. That line is joined at even strength and on the power play by Brent Seabrook, so he’s the D-man to use if you go with that line.
The other option is to go with Chicago’s other top six line, which normally consists of Andrew Shaw, Marian Hossa and Toews, with Teuvo Teravainen taking Toews’ spot for the night. Hossa is more than affordable everywhere, and Teravainen and Shaw are fairly cheap everywhere, with Teravainen being a bit more of a value. As far as GPPs go, the Teravainen line is a much more interesting option than the Anisimov line just from a contrarian perspective. If you go that route, Erik Gustaffson is a cheap option on the blue line who should see some power play time with this line.
Pittsburgh home to Ottawa
Ottawa allowed the fourth most shot attempts per 60 in the first half, and they’re a bit depleted at the moment. Pittsburgh tends to match lines up evenly at home, and Ottawa’s top line as currently constructed is a bit weaker than it’s second line in terms of possession. That means the Sidney Crosby line could have a slightly better matchup than the Evgeni Malkin line. The Malkin line was hot before the break, so the Crosby line should be the less popular play.
Crosby is joined by Patric Hornqvist at even strength and on the top power play, making them a nice mini-stack option. That’s probably a better idea on FanDuel where Hornqvist is a very nice value. The other member of that top line is Matt Cullen who could be part of a GPP stack of Crosby’s line. Cullen stands out as a value on FantasyDraft and DraftKings.
As for the Malkin line, no one could fault you for a Malkin-Phil Kessel stack, or even something involving Carl Hagelin. Both Kessel and Hagelin are more feasible as options on DraftKings and Fantasy Draft. Whether you end up going with Crosby’s line or Malkin’s, Kris Letang is the D-man you want if you can afford him as he chews up most of the power play time on the blue line.
Edmonton home to Columbus
Columbus allowed the third most shot attempts per 60 in the first half, and they almost caught Calgary for lowest team save percentage before the break. There’s no real obvious Columbus line to target or avoid based on possession numbers, so just lean on Edmonton’s top line, which is an excellent possession trio.
Leon Draisaitl, Taylor Hall and Teddy Purcell make up that top line, and they play together on the top power play unit. Draisaitl and Purcell are affordable enough on all sites, but Hall is the pricey guy that can be tough to fit in. He probably carries the most value on DraftKings tonight, with Fantasy Draft also being an option to slot him in. If you’d like to use an Edmonton D-man, Justin Schultz is your guy.
There’s definitely some value down Edmonton’s roster in this matchup, so the rankings below are sprinkled with other Oilers from their second line and depth lines. If you want to be contrarian or are just hunting for cheap options, consider those other Oilers.
On the other side of that game, the Blue Jackets that aren’t facing Edmonton’s top line are in a decent spot. The guess is that the Draisaitl line matches up with Columbus’ Brandon Dubinksy line, so Alexander Wennberg‘s line is worth a look. He and Scott Hartnell play together at even strength and on the power play, so they’re an option as a mini-stack on certain sites.
- Sidney Crosby – $7,400 – Pittsburgh Penguins
- Artem Anisimov – $4,800 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Leon Draisaitl – $5,000 – Edmonton Oilers
- Evgeni Malkin – $7,600 – Pittsburgh Penguins
- Claude Giroux – $6,800 – Philadelphia Flyers
- Alexander Wennberg – $3,800 – Columbus Blue Jackets
- Ryan Strome – $3,900 – New York Islanders
- Patrick Kane – $8,800 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Taylor Hall – $7,000 – Edmonton Oilers
- Marian Hossa – $5,300 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Artemi Panarin – $6,200 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Benoit Pouliot – $4,000 – Edmonton Oilers
- Jakub Voracek – $6,100 – Philadelphia Flyers
- Patric Hornqvist – $6,600 – Pittsburgh Penguins
- Scott Hartnell – $5,700 – Columbus Blue Jackets
- Teddy Purcell – $4,000 – Edmonton Oilers
- Teuvo Teravainen – $3,800 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Andrew Shaw – $4,100 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Carl Hagelin – $3,700 – Pittsburgh Penguins
- Kris Letang – $6,200 – Pittsburgh Penguins
- Brent Seabrook – $5,600 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Shayne Gostisbehere – $5,200 – Philadelphia Flyers
- Justin Schultz – $3,700 – Edmonton Oilers
- Erik Gustafsson – $3,200 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Jack Johnson – $3,800 – Columbus Blue Jackets
- Sidney Crosby – $8,700 – Pittsburgh Penguins
- Leon Draisaitl – $4,800 – Edmonton Oilers
- Artem Anisimov – $4,700 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Evgeni Malkin – $9,200 – Pittsburgh Penguins
- Patrice Bergeron – $7,200 – Boston Bruins
- Benoit Pouliot – $5,200 – Edmonton Oilers
- Tomas Plekanec – $5,200 – Montreal Canadiens
- Artemi Panarin – $5,600 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Taylor Hall – $7,800 – Edmonton Oilers
- Andrew Shaw – $5,400 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Alex Galchenyuk – $4,200 – Montreal Canadiens
- Nail Yakupov – $3,600 – Edmonton Oilers
- Anders Lee – $5,100 – New York Islanders
- Valeri Nichushkin – $3,400 – Dallas Stars
- Patrick Kane – $8,800 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Marian Hossa – $6,100 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Patric Hornqvist – $5,900 – Pittsburgh Penguins
- Brendan Gallagher – $5,300 – Montreal Canadiens
- Tyler Toffoli – $5,500 – Los Angeles Kings
- Teddy Purcell – $4,600 – Edmonton Oilers
- Teuvo Teravainen – $4,700 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Shayne Gostisbehere – $4,700 – Philadelphia Flyers
- Kris Letang – $6,200 – Pittsburgh Penguins
- Brent Seabrook – $4,800 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Shea Theodore – $3,700 – Anaheim Ducks
- Torey Krug – $5,500 – Boston Bruins
- John Klingberg – $5,400 – Dallas Stars
- Nick Leddy – $4,500 – New York Islanders
- Sidney Crosby – $15,400 – Pittsburgh Penguins
- Artem Anisimov – $9,900 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Leon Draisaitl – $10,300 – Edmonton Oilers
- Evgeni Malkin – $15,800 – Pittsburgh Penguins
- Alexander Wennberg – $7,500 – Columbus Blue Jackets
- Ryan Strome – $7,800 – New York Islanders
- Matt Cullen – $4,900 – Pittsburgh Penguins
- Patrick Kane – $18,300 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Taylor Hall – $14,500 – Edmonton Oilers
- Artemi Panarin – $12,900 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Marian Hossa – $11,000 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Jordan Eberle – $9,600 – Edmonton Oilers
- Teddy Purcell – $7,900 – Edmonton Oilers
- Teuvo Teravainen – $7,500 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Andrew Shaw – $8,100 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Phil Kessel – $14,000 – Pittsburgh Penguins
- Patric Hornqvist – $13,600 – Pittsburgh Penguins
- Scott Hartnell – $11,800 – Columbus Blue Jackets
- Kris Letang – $12,700 – Pittsburgh Penguins
- Brent Seabrook – $11,500 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Shayne Gostisbehere – $10,600 – Philadelphia Flyers
- Erik Gustafsson – $6,200 – Chicago Blackhawks
- Justin Schultz – $7,200 – Edmonton Oilers
- Nick Leddy – $8,700 – New York Islanders
- Tuukka Rask – $7,900 – Boston Bruins
- Michal Neuvirth* – $7,300 – Philadelphia Flyers
- Jaroslav Halak – $7,500 – New York Islanders
- Philipp Grubauer – $6,900 – Washington Capitals
- Steve Mason – $7,100 – Philadelphia Flyers
- Cam Talbot – $6,800 – Edmonton Oilers
- Marc-Andre Fleury – $8,200 – Pittsburgh Penguins
- Tuukka Rask – $8,300 – Boston Bruins
- Jaroslav Halak – $8,400 – New York Islanders
- Michal Neuvirth* – $8,700 – Philadelphia Flyers
- Philipp Grubauer – $7,500 – Washington Capitals
- Steve Mason – $7,700 – Philadelphia Flyers
- Cam Talbot – $7,100 – Edmonton Oilers
- Connor Hellebuyck – $6,900 – Winnipeg Jets
- Boston Bruins Team Goalie – $18,700
- Philadelphia Flyers Team Goalie – $16,700
- New York Islanders Team Goalie – $18,400
- Pittsburgh Penguins Team Goalie – $19,400
- Edmonton Team Goalie – $14,800
Goalies with an asterisk next to their name are not expected to start tonight but haven’t been ruled out, so don’t count on them playing. Any players in bold have been confirmed as the starter for the day. And players with a line through their name will not be starting tonight. Make sure you always check LeftWingLock for starting goalie updates in case I am unable to update the list throughout the day.
You can download the research chart from this Google Sheet page here.