Daily Fantasy Hockey Strategy: Value Picks, January 21st
The Fix always has a full breakdown of significant NHL slates for our Front Office subscribers, but now we’re also going to be highlighting a few value plays for everyone on most days with big NHL slates. Below you’ll find three or four players who are cheap and undervalued in today’s DraftKings contests.
If you’d like to read our full breakdown of tonight’s slate, complete with player rankings, you can become a Front Office member or purchase today’s breakdown individually here.
Joseph Blandisi—New Jersey Devils–$2800
Blandisi isn’t a sexy play, but the former Colorado draft pick is a player to like tonight against an Ottawa team that allows a ton of shots. The Devils aren’t a goal-scoring machine, but with Michael Cammalleri back in the lineup, they become a more dangerous team. Ottawa will try to shut down New Jersey’s top line, giving Blandisi and his line mates lots of room to work. The 21-year-old’s price tag is low and his upside is high enough to take a risk on him. He isn’t a sexy play, but he just might score you enough points to help you win some 50/50s.
Noah Hanifin—Carolina Hurricanes–$3300
The rookie isn’t tearing the league up point-wise, but he’s still putting together a solid NHL season. Hanifin continues to see upwards of 17 minutes a night and is a lock on the top power play unit. The Hurricanes take on the Leafs in Toronto and Hanifin is an excellent bargain bin play. Paying up for Justin Faulk isn’t always easy, so if you decide to spend your money elsewhere, Hanifin is a perfect plan B.
Carl Hagelin—Pittsburgh Penguins–$3300
The former Anaheim Ducks forward was acquired by Pittsburgh earlier this week and is getting a chance to show management that he can play with the big boys. Hagelin is expected to skate on a line with Phil Kessel and Evgeni Malkin, increasing his ceiling dramatically. He isn’t seeing any power play work right now, but that could change over the course of the next few games. Regardless, Hagelin is getting a chance to play with two of the most talented players on the team and doesn’t need more than an assist and a few shots on goal to hit value. If you need to roster a winger with a high upside, Hagelin is your guy.
Joel Armia—Winnipeg Jets–$3200
Armia is an interesting play tonight. The former 16th overall pick in 2011 hasn’t done much in the NHL so far this season—scoring two goals on 12 shots—but he’s finally getting a chance to play in the top six, meaning he should be able to rack up a few more points. Over the last five games, Armia has seen his ice time go from just over seven minutes a game to over 15 minutes on Monday. He managed to find the back of the net against Colorado and didn’t look out of place playing on the second line with Mathieu Perreault and Nikolaj Ehlers. That line also got the benefit of playing against Colorado depth lines and avoiding top six forwards and could continue to get those kind of matchups tonight. Armia’s price tag is extremely low and his upside is high enough to consider giving him a shot. Plug him into your lineup if you need a cheap play to fill out your roster.
Michael Grabner—Toronto Maple Leafs–$3000
The speedy Grabner hasn’t had a ton of success this season in Toronto, but he continues to see top six minutes playing on a line with Tyler Bozak and P.A Parenteau. It’s nearly impossible to find a player a minimum price playing in the top six, but when you do find one, you take advantage of it. The Hurricanes will be without Cam Ward for the next few games after being placed on IR with a concussion, so Eddie Lack will handle the bulk of the starts for Carolina. Lack hasn’t been great this year and Toronto could score a few goals by the time its all said and done. As long as Grabner stays in the top six, he’s worth a look in favourable matchups.