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Daily Fantasy Hockey Strategy: October 18, 2016

Below we’ve got a discussion of the best matchups and potential stacks of the day followed by player rankings for Tuesday’s 12-game evening slate of NHL contests on DraftKings and FanDuel.

As always, make sure to check Twitter for any injury news, and check LeftWingLock for starting goalies and line combos.

Game Breakdowns

Washington Capitals vs. Colorado Avalanche

It’s still way too early in the season to being using team statistics from this year to decide good and bad matchups. In the meantime, I’m aggregating player possession numbers from last year and averaging them out to find the best teams, and the best lines on those teams, to pick on. Colorado is plainly one of the poor possession teams to pick on, and there are no lines or D pairs you really need to avoid. It remains to be seen whether a new coaching staff can improve the Avs possession game, so until we see it, we’re operating as if they’re still bad.

This is probably a good night to pay up for Alex Ovechkin, and his price tag is much more favorable on FD. If you can’t fit Ovi into your lineup, T.J. Oshie is a nice way to get exposure to Ovi he plays on the top line and top power play unit with Oshie. Oshie’s price tag is a bit better on FD but not to the degree that Ovechkin’s is. If you’re stacking Caps, John Carlson could be a part of the stack as he runs the point on the top power play unit. And if you want to go all in on that top power play, Marcus Johansson from the second line plays up on the top unit. That said, stacking Caps in a GPP might not be the best idea given that they should be a very popular play tonight. But make sure you have exposure to them in cash games.

Nashville Predators vs. Dallas Stars

If you played DFS last year, you know that Dallas can score a lot and can be scored upon a lot. We got a fresh reminder of that on Saturday when they lost 6-5 in an absolute shootout in Colorado. And the Stars are still rolling with a crap-tastic pair of goalies, so virtually every time they play their opponent will be worth a look. Most nights the Stars will be worth a look as well, but tonight this one is all about Nashville.

Ideally you want to avoid Preds that will see Dallas’ top line, and Mike Fisher‘s line drew the opponent’s top line in Nashville’s one home game so far this season. For that reason, lean towards Ryan Johansen‘s line tonight. Johansen is joined by Filip Forsberg at even strength and on the power play, so they make for an excellent mini-stack option. Their other linemate, Kevin Fiala, is nice and cheap on both sites but does not see power play work. As a result, Fiala is best reserved for salary relief in GPPs or as part of a full stack of that Johansen line. On the blue line, Roman Josi runs the point on that top power play unit.

With the exception of Fiala, Predators are all priced better on DK than they are on FD, so that’s the site to use Nashville if you like them tonight.

Behind the paywall you’ll find the rest of today’s NHL DFS game breakdowns and player rankings.

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Arizona Coyotes @ Ottawa Senators

This game has the makings of a high scoring affair. Both teams give up a high volume of shot attempts, and the way Ottawa has been matching its lines up in early home games could give very good matchups to each team’s top line. Both teams weakest lines are their third lines (fourth lines excluded from consideration), and Ottawa has used its third line against the opposition’s top line in early home games while using their top line against the opposing third line. If that usage holds, each team’s best offensive players will be on the ice most often with the opposition’s weakest possession players. Sounds like goals to me.

Arizona’s top line is centered by Martin Hanzal along with Radim Vrbata and Max Domi. All three guys also stay together on the top power play unit. Hanzal is priced much, much better on DK, and Domi is priced a bit better there as well, so that’s probably the best site to use Yotes. Joining them on the blue line for power play situations is Oliver Ekman-Larsson, who is also priced a bit better on DK.

For the Sens, the top line is centered by Kyle Turris along with Mike Hoffman and Mark Stone. All three of those guys are priced noticeably better on FD than DK, so FD is the spot to use Sens. That’s especially true for Hoffman who is almost a lock in FD cash lineups. Unfortunately, Turris is on the second power play unit while his wingers play on the top unit, but that’s not prohibitive to stacking the whole line. Also in play is stud defenseman Erik Karlsson. He is also priced much better on FD, and he’s really almost priced out of any consideration on DK.

Calgary Flames vs. Buffalo Sabres

Buffalo is similar to Colorado in that they just don’t present any prohibitive individual matchups. Sure, you’d prefer to pick on their depth lines if the team playing them had good depth players to roster. But you by no means have to avoid players facing Buffalo’s top six and/or top D pairs. Because the Flames don’t really have great depth, don’t worry about picking on Buffalo’s depth lines and just roll with Calgary’s top line.

Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan are the mini-stack option here, and there’s not a specific site where you should try to use them. Monahan is priced better on DK and Gaudreau is priced better on FD, if you’re using them as one-offs. Mark Giordano joins them on the power play at the point, and he’s priced reasonably on both sites. If you’re going with a full on Calgary stack, you might do it on FD where Monahan/Gaudreau’s other linemate, Kris Versteeg, is very cheap. Versteeg won’t work on the power play with his linemates, but he has seen a little work with the second unit.

Player Rankings

Centers

  1. Ryan Johansen — Nashville —DK: $5,700 — FD: $6,500
  2. Sean Monahan — Calgary —DK: $6,100 — FD: $7,000
  3. Martin Hanzal — Arizona —DK: $4,400 — FD: $5,800
  4. Evgeni Malkin — Pittsburgh —DK: $7,300 — FD: $8,400 (DK only)
  5. Evgeny Kuznetsov — Washington —DK: $6,200 — FD: $6,100
  6. Kyle Turris — Ottawa —DK: $5,600 — FD: $5,100
  7. Paul Stastny — St. Louis —DK: $4,900 — FD: $5,800 (DK only)

Defensemen

  1. Kris Letang — Pittsburgh —DK: $7,000 — FD: $7,000
  2. John Carlson — Washington —DK: $6,000 — FD: $6400
  3. Mark Giordano — Calgary —DK: $6,700 — FD: $6,800
  4. Roman Josi — Nashville —DK: $6,300 — FD: $6,900
  5. Oscar Klefbom — Edmonton —DK: $4,600 — FD: $4,100 (FD only)
  6. Oliver Ekman-Larsson — Arizona —DK: $6,100 — FD: $6,500
  7. Erik Karlsson — Ottawa —DK: $8,100 — FD: $7,200
  8. Ryan Ellis — Nashville —DK: $3,500 — FD: $4,400 (DK only)

Wingers

  1. Alex Ovechkin — Washington —DK: $8,400 — FD: $8,200
  2. Filip Forsberg — Nashville —DK: $6,600 — FD: $7,100
  3. Mike Hoffman — Ottawa —DK: $5,900 — FD: $5,500
  4. Patrick Kane — Chicago —DK: $8,000 — FD: $8,400
  5. Johnny Gaudreau — Calgary —DK: $7,100 — FD: $7,200
  6. Max Domi — Arizona —DK: $4,700 — FD: $5,500
  7. T.J. Oshie — Washington —DK: $5,500 — FD: $5,600
  8. Jonathan Marchessault — Florida —DK: $4,000 — FD: $4,600
  9. Mark Stone — Ottawa —DK: $5,600 — FD: $5,900
  10. Radim Vrbata — Arizona —DK: $4,500 — FD: $4,500
  11. Kevin Fiala — Nashville —DK: $3,800 — FD: $3,300
  12. Marcus Johansson — Washington —DK: $4,200 — FD: $4,600
  13. Kris Versteeg — Calgary —DK: $4,000 — FD: $3,500

Goalies

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. Make sure you always check LeftWingLock for starting goalie updates in case I am unable to update the list throughout the day.

  1. Devan Dubnyk — Minnesota —DK: $7,500 — FD: $8,400
  2. Corey Crawford — Chicago —DK: $8,200 — FD: $8,700 (FD only)
  3. Thomas Griess* — New York Islanders —DK: $7,600 — FD: $8,200
  4. Al Montoya — Montreal —DK: $7,500 — FD: $8,100
  5. Jaroslav Halak — New York Islanders —DK: $7,600 — FD: $8,500

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