A nine-game NHL DFS slate awaits us on Thursday night, and it features a turbo (two games) and late (two games) option. The potential value plays for DraftKings and FanDuel contests are overflowing, and we’re here to help with recommended picks and more daily fantasy hockey advice. We factor in advanced stats, Vegas odds, matchups, and potential points per dollar when making our suggestions.
A couple games have an over/under of six, according to Vegas odds, and the New York-Pittsburgh game is at 6.5. Of course, Vegas is not always right. Several potentially high-scoring matchups disappointed on Tuesday and Wednesday night.
Because of the volatile nature of goalies (and other reasons), there will be more information on social media coming closer to roster lock. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. If you are looking for even more advice and insight, please check me out on Twitter @ChrisWasselDFS. Let’s get into tonight’s value picks after a visit from the RotoQL optimizer.
Thursday NHL DFS Picks: Center values
Patrik Berglund, St. Louis vs. Dallas (DraftKings $3,600, FanDuel $3.800)
Thursday features myriad higher-profile center options. Berglund is a nice play but has risk because of that last game. He has mostly stayed around $3,500 all season long with a few exceptions (only four games). Berglund has been seeing around 15 minutes a night. Pace and shot flow could be low. Berglund’s floor is lower than it would be otherwise.
With the nine-game slate, there is still room to set up a few different lineups that are outside the limits of being safe. Expect Boston, Tampa, and Pittsburgh ownership to be extremely high, as DFS players will keep trying to go for it. Watch Winnipeg-Florida for pace, as it could be elevated. Check on the status of Vincent Trocheck to make sure he plays (was questionable as of press time)
The good news is there are several other options as far as value on Thursday night. Adrian Kempe and Phillip Danault/Jonathan Drouin will be nice shelter even with their slightly rising DraftKings prices. Remember, extreme chalk can be used — just know what to expect.
Other Options: Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin (very chalky), Anze Kopitar (quite chalky), Brayden Point (chalk potential), Matthew Barzal, Mark Scheifele. Nazem Kadri, Aleksander Barkov.
Crazy Value Possible: Christian Dvorak, Tomas Plekanec (some risk).
Thursday Daily Fantasy Hockey Picks: Winger values
Marian Gaborik, Los Angeles @ Washington (DraftKings $4,100, FanDuel $4,500)
Gaborik is on a bit of a roll, as he has exceeded value in three of his first five games. Ottawa’s defense can be considered somewhat leaky, as it will allow over 30 shots a game. Gaborik has looked the best he has in a few seasons. While this is not 2007, the winger is seeing power play time, which will add value, particularly given his lower price on DraftKings (some rise but, again, first-line potential). See if he sticks on that top line.
Tampa and Winnipeg will be plays, as well, because of their strong power play. Both teams can make this case as we did on the Fantasy Hockey X podcast (also on iTunes) last night. The late games are a bit of a nightmare to gauge because of all the line switching. It is highly recommended to check back often to see what happens next.
Daniel Sedin, Anthony Duclair, and Loui Eriksson (again!) are all nice low-price options on DraftKings tonight. With this slate, even these riskier plays are viable. On a few lineups, these forwards may be worth a shot. Watch the second and even third lines of some teams.
Other Options: Brayden Schenn (Risk due to point chasing), Nikita Kucherov (chalky, but Palat won’t be), Brad Marchand (chalk), Nik Ehlers, Tyler Toffoli, Brock Boeser, Anders Lee (as a one-off), Mike Hoffman (high-risk GPP flier). More plays will be on social media.
Crazy Value Possible: Trevor Lewis, Christian Fischer (high risk), Jacob De Brusk (if he plays…if not then Nick Bjugstad), Brandon Perlini, Sam Gagner (dangerous risk).
Thursday NHL DFS Advice: Defensemen picks, values
Jake Muzzin, Las Vegas vs. Ottawa (DraftKings $4,800, FanDuel $5,000)
Choices are abundant among defensemen on Thursday night. Muzzin shoots at moderate levels typically and has block potential of two or three shots a game. On occasion, that number can go up. That sounds a bit risky, but Ottawa’s metrics (particularly Corsi against) have been at the bottom of the league. This means more chances for points in conventional and not-so-conventional ways.
Muzzin has exceeded value in three straight contests and again will be utilized to set up for offense tonight. There should be enough chances for the Kings defenseman to come in with a solid floor. Plus, this will save money for all those higher-priced choices and stacks. One can even pivot off to Alec Martinez for a bit more savings (just $3,900 on DraftKings).
The defenseman position has lots of possibilities. Nick Leddy could be a semi-chalky-yet-good choice because Pittsburgh will give up some quality chances (expected goals allowed over three). Their goaltending can give up goals in small bunches. Expected goals for is up tonight for some defensemen, and value is higher than usual as seen below with our recommendations. Shea Weber is an intriguing under-the-radar play on a night like this with so much chalk.
Other Options: Ivan Provorov (not as chalky), Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Mikhail Sergachev, Jake Muzzin (less risk), Kris Letang (will be chalky), John Klingberg (moderately owned but has potential), Dustin Byfuglien (risk but possible reward). Even more picks will be on social media due to lineup shifts and injuries.
Crazy Value Possible: Derrick Pouliot (risky because of point chasing), Olli Maatta, Mike Matheson, Jakob Chychrun (some may still forget he is back).
Thursday Daily Fantasy Hockey Advice: Goalie picks, values
Carey Price, Montreal vs. Calgary (DraftKings $7,900, FanDuel $9,000)
Price’s luck ran out on Tuesday night, as Montreal fell to St. Louis at home. However, the goalie has a good chance to bounce back against a Calgary team on the back end of a back-to-back. Montreal is well rested and could likely have Jonathan Drouin back. The goalie had five straight wins and quality starts to boot. A stinker may leave some off his trail on Thursday, so ownership may be a little lower. On DraftKings, his cost is less prohibitive.
Price is a cash option on DraftKings and a risky choice on FanDuel. That leaves the dilemma of who else to play. Confirmations are just coming out, so the best course of action may be to wait a bit. There are also some low team totals tonight. For as many bullish predictions from Vegas, there are some bears, as well.
The emphasis will be to wait until closer to lock (7 p.m. ET) for any line shifts and goalie changes, etc. Also, watch for injuries and returns tonight as some projections may be impacted. Finally, for GPPs, one is looking for quality starts potential, 30-plus shots faced or very close and high save potential.
Other Options: Tuukka Rask (near chalk — cash), Connor Hellebuyck (GPP Risk), Jonathan Quick (chasing the win), Jakob Markstrom. More choices will come closer to lock.
NHL DFS Picks for Thursday: Top Lines to Stack
These are based on RotoQL lineup optimizer projections. Coming soon, this will be a space where we dive into even more of what the optimizer spits out.
- · PIT 1 and even 2– 1 will be chalky but not mega chalk like some are predicting. PIT 2 could be owned at a higher rate. Even PIT PP 1 will be almost chalky honestly.
- · TBL 1 – Is less expensive with Tyler Johnson but watch to see who draws MacKinnon assignment, pivot to TBL 2 if needed even though they will be moderately high owned.
- · NYI 1 – May be near chalk level based on expected goals projections. NYI 2 likely to draw depth Pittsburgh match-ups.
- · BOS 2 – Some will enjoy Boston’s first line but the second line will have more value and price relief. Line one needs four goals to hit value in a GPP while the second line would just need a couple.
- · VAN 2 – One of the cheapest line stacks period with the Sedins and Loui Eriksson. Will draw against Flyers third defensive pairing and bottom lines.
- · LAK 1 (Especially if Marian Gaborik stays on line one.)
- · ARZ 2 for contrarian value (lowered expectations given they have hit the under five of the last six times in Calgary).
- · DAL 2 – Watch for Seguin even in what could be a mid-event game. Note we said could… Dallas does not allow a lot of chances typically even on the road. Could be low event game with some scoring. Tough to use too much of STL 2.
- · MTL 3 – Another underrated play on a night full of them.
- · WPG PP or FLA PP units – Very risky but has potential given chances allowed from each penalty kill. Look to some power play stacks tonight.
These are just a few lines. As updates become more available, there will be more suggestions on social media. Watch to see who plays. That will swing ownership a little bit. This is one of those nights where even one or two scoops can mean a huge difference. One of the major tips for lineup construction will be to start trusting some of the numbers a little more. Trends are establishing themselves. Our spotlight picks feature more value, which can mean more inherent risk.
NHL DFS Strategy: Reviewing what went wrong
This is always going to be a section full of “hindsight is 20/20”. Wednesday’s four-game slate is pretty easy to analyze. If you did not play Frederik Andersen, Braden Holtby, or Ryan Miller, there was trouble. If you played Chicago, Toronto, or Edmonton, that really hurt. The chalk did not hit mostly. Now Washington did hit, and Adam Henrique scored twice. He has become a viable DFS play, and yet he was so low owned on Wednesday night. Philadelphia’s slightly jumbled lines did not make things easy either.
Article source: http://www.sportingnews.com/fantasy/sport/news/nhl-dfs-picks-strategy-thursday-december-7-advice-daily-fantasy-hockey-over-under-vegas-total-draftkings-fanduel-sleepers-values-gpp-tournaments-cash/1vv4j0jbp1uop1pwskjh648q20