NHL DFS is similar to MLB in terms of how you build lineups, how you view stacking, and how to value players.
Two main points to always focus on in NHL DFS are what lines the players are on and making sure the goalies you are rostering are confirmed as the starters. Two of the best resources for that are LeftWingLock.com or DailyFaceOff.com. That is where you can find updated forward and power-play lines for each team, along with which goalies are confirmed as the starters.
Let’s jump in to take a look at today’s slate and some players to consider for your lineups.
Goalie to Target
Antti Raanta ($7,500): The Carolina Hurricanes are -164 home favorites, yet Raanta is the lowest-salaried goalie on the slate. A -164 moneyline puts the Canes as the largest favorite on the slate, giving us a clear discrepancy to jump all over. The Canes were one of the best defensive teams in the regular season and have shown that so far in the playoffs.
In their seven games series against the Boston Bruins, the Canes allowed 2.02 goals per 60 minutes in five-on-five situations, which was the fourth-best in the first round. Of course, this is a small sample size, but it’s not too far off from their 2.17 goals allowed in that situation during the entire regular season. Their strong defense always puts Raanta in a spot to come away with the win.
Connor McDavid ($10,000): With some injury concerns for Leon Draisaitl, McDavid will need to step up and do a bit more. Draisaitl is one of the best players in the league and finished with 110 NHL points, which was the third-most this season. The injury note is rather concerning considering NHL teams are notoriously tight-lipped regarding injury information during the playoffs. If this information is widely known, it appears to be a substantial issue for the Edmonton Oilers. So, if Draisaitl isn’t 100%, a bit more pressure will be on McDavid to have a big game.
In the first round, McDavid was beyond elite with 14 NHL points and 27 shots on goal in seven games versus the Los Angeles Kings. He’s always a threat for a multi-point performance — something you can’t say about many players on this small two-game slate.
Johnny Gaudreau ($8,900): Gaudreau and the Calgary Flames have a 3.54 implied goal total tonight, which is the highest on the slate. Despite the Flames’ offense being a bit up and down in the first round, Gaudreau is carrying an active five-game point streak into the Battle of Alberta versus the Oilers. A total of 8 NHL points and 25 shots on goal in the first round were the highest on the Flames, which shouldn’t come as a surprise with his role on the first forward line and the first power-play unit.
This matchup could feature plenty of offense, and it could get going quickly. In the first round, the Flames scored 1.82 goals per 60 minutes in five-on-five situations, which was the third-lowest in the playoffs. However, due to their shot quality, they registered 3.39 expected goals scored per 60 minutes in five-on-five situations. Their offense underproduced significantly and should be due for some positive regression. On the other side, the Oilers’ defense allowed 2.16 Goals in the same situations in the first round but posted 2.74 expected goals against.
The Flames were worse on offense than they should’ve been, and the Oilers were better on defense than they should’ve been. This could set up for plenty of higher-scoring matchups and plenty of fantasy points for all involved.
Seth Jarvis ($4,700): The Canes scored 3.23 goals per 60 minutes in five-on-five situations in the first round, showing their offense is carrying over from the regular season. We’ve always looked to the Canes’ players for some offensive upside, and that isn’t stopping now.
Jarvis is skating on the first forward line and the first power-play unit, which is a big role for a rookie in the playoffs. That role led him to produce 5 NHL points and 19 shots on goal in the first seven games — something he should be able to keep doing moving forward.
Ryan Lindgren ($4,100): Lindgren is a true point-per-dollar option with little offensive upside. If you need salary relief that can fill up the stat sheet, Lindgren might be the answer tonight. He played only four games in the first round versus the Pittsburgh Penguins due to an injury but managed to pile up 2 NHL points, 10 shots on goal, and 11 blocked shots.
Offense is truly hit or miss for him, but the combination of over four shots plus blocks per game gives him plenty of fantasy value for his salary.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism