We have a small two-game slate today, but there is still plenty of money to be made in NHL DFS. Please consider the usual strategy differences on small slates. You may want to look at more unusual roster constructions and get away from standard full-line stacking with a correlating defenseman and goalie. You’ll also want to try to incorporate some lower-owned plays in tournaments. Leaving considerable salary on the board is more of an option as well. Let’s dig in.
Top Stacks – Overall
Washington 1 – DraftKings: $18,400 – FanDuel: $23,500
Alex Ovechkin – Evgeny Kuznetsov – Garnet Hathaway
We’ve had quite the revolving door of who will skate alongside Ovechkin/Kuznetsov this year, and now we have Garnet Hathaway. He does not run with the first power play, and it may be a bit of a downgrade, but he is cheap and does lower the overall line cost. Still, this will be our top line of the day by a considerable margin on this two-gamer. You can also consider leaving Hathaway off the line and playing a two-man Ovechkin/Kuznetsov, possibly paired with a defenseman such as John Carlson.
Calgary 1 – DraftKings: $18,200 – FanDuel: $23,400
Johnny Gaudreau – Matthew Tkachuk – Elias Lindholm
It is a brutal matchup for Calgary on the road against a stingy Carolina squad. Still, we are banking on talent here with one of the top lines in hockey. It is a two-game slate, and we don’t have any excellent matchups, so we are mostly just looking at the best lines in a vacuum here.
Top Stack – DraftKings Value
St. Louis 1 – $12,600
Pavel Buchnevich – Ryan O’Reilly – Ivan Barbashev
This line is simply too cheap for a line one skating on home ice. All three skaters are on the power play, although mixed between PP1 and PP2. You also have a natural pairing with one of the top defensemen on the slate in Colton Parayko. We will need to save somewhere to pay up for lines like WAS1, CGY1, or CAR1, and STL1 is the glaring option here.
Top Stack – FanDuel Value
Carolina 2 – $15,600
Andrei Svechnikov – Vincent Trocheck – Jesper Fast
It would be nice if these guys were a little cheaper, and you could dip down to CAR3 for additional savings. Still, Carolina’s second line is considerably more viable. Fast does not skate on the power play, and you could consider leaving him off the line, although he is very cheap and makes this more of a value line. You can also pair them with a value defenseman like Brady Skjei or Ian Cole for additional savings and correlation.
Top Plays – Forwards
Alex Ovechkin – DraftKings: $9,200 – FanDuel: $10,400
Evgeny Kuznetsov – DraftKings: $6,500 – FanDuel: $8,000
Elias Lindholm – DraftKings: $5,800 – FanDuel: $7,100
David Perron – DraftKings: $4,500 – FanDuel: $6,300
David Perron: $4,500 (ceiling and value!)
Ryan O’Reilly: $4,300
Brandon Saad: $3,400
Blake Coleman: $2,900
Ryan O’Reilly: $5,500
Vincent Trocheck: $5,500
Lars Eller: $4,500
Jordan Staal: $3,700
Top Plays – Defenseman
John Carlson – DraftKings: $6,800 – FanDuel: $6,900
Tony DeAngelo – DraftKings: $5,900 – FanDuel: $6,000
Colton Parayko – DraftKings: $4,800 – FanDuel: $5,000
Torey Krug – DraftKings: $4,000 – FanDuel: $5,000
Justin Faulk: $3,700
Oliver Kylington: $3,200
Brady Skjei: $2,700
Ian Cole: $2,500
Colton Parayko: $5,000 (ceiling and value!)
Brett Pesce: $4,500
Brady Skjei: $3,800
Justin Schultz: $3,800
Top Plays – Goalie
Since this is a two-game slate, there are only four goalies to choose from. I would correlate your goalie with a team from which you have a lot of offensive players. You can play skaters against your goalie on a two-gamer, but I’d try to keep it to a minimum. You can also play a goalie that is not correlated with a stack. Still, again, I would avoid playing too many skaters against that goalie if going that route.
Tournament Stack Pivots
This is a small slate, so you can’t do a lot to get sneaky. We should generally see lower ownership on the Carolina side of the CGY/CAR game. While Washington is the preferred side of the WAS/STL game, STL will be very popular due to their pricing. I’d mostly try to get unique with your lineup construction rather than seeking a low-owned stack. You can also use lower-owned defensemen or one-offs to differentiate an otherwise chalky lineup.