We have a seven-game main NHL slate going down on this Tuesday evening, so let’s jump into some GPP picks and get across those cash lines!
FanDuel NHL DFS Picks – February 9, 2021
C – Dylan Larkin (DET) – $7,200 vs. FLA
The Red Wings finally got to breath a sigh of relief on Sunday as their 4-1 victory over the Florida Panthers snapped an ugly eight-game losing streak while it was the first time since their second game of the season they were able to manage more than three goals in a game. The Wings had scored just six goals across a four-game span prior to Sunday’s win
So, perhaps they can build some momentum off that. It’s early, and the Panthers sport some quality advanced defensive metrics, but call me a pessimistic on that group. Furthermore, call be extremely pessimistic on goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky. The two-time Vezina winner is once again struggling to find his game as he did last year in Florida as he’ll enter this one sporting a 3.57 GAA and .881 Sv% on the season and is coming off an effort against the Predators in which he allowed six goals on 41 shots (.854) in defeat.
A year after opening his Panthers tenure with a 3.23 GAA and .900 Sv%, it’s safe to say it’s been another disappointing start for the Russian puckstopper.
For his part, Larkin has tallied four goals and nine points in 13 games this season to go along with a hefty 40 shots on goal. For a team that’s averaging 2.00 goals per game — 30th in the league — those are some fine number for the team’s new captain.
I’m not going to go crazy with Red Wings exposure here, but Larkin is a worthy look in GPPs given Bobrovsky’s early-season woes.
C – William Karlsson (VGK) – $5,200 vs. ANH
The last time we rostered Karlsson was last week against the Kings, and he rewarded us with a goal, two assists and four shots on goal in the blowout win. Now, Karlsson gets another fine matchup against another Californian club in the Anaheim Ducks.
It hasn’t been a good idea to bet against John Gibson this season, but man so the Ducks sports some extremely poor defensive metrics.
At 5v5 this season, the Ducks rank 28th in scoring chances against/60, 25th in high-danger chances against/60 and 27th in expected goals against/60. Gibson’s heroics have the Ducks allowing 1.89 goals per/60 at 5v5 this season, however that number is well below their expected 2.45 mark.
As a result, the Ducks sit eighth in overall defense while allowing 2.54 goals per game on the season, but Gibson’s .918 Sv% and two shutouts in 11 outings is a major reason as to why.
Karlsson has notched three goals and six points on the season to go along with 20 shots on goal. He doesn’t shoot the puck a ton, but skates on the team’s top power play unit while centering the second line.
He and his Vegas teammates should be all over the Ducks in this one tonight.
W – Filip Zadina (DET) – $3,200 vs. FLA
He might play for one of the league’s worst offenses, but I’m a big fan of Zadina’ value in this one tonight.
Obviously, I like the matchup with the Panthers and Bobrovsky. It’s been a fruitful one when he’s been in goal this season and despite their improved ability to prevent chances this season, pucks are still finding the back of the net.
That said, this is more about Zadina’s new-found look to Larkins’s right on the team’s top line at 5v5. Unfortunately, it doesn’t appear as if Zadina will skate on the same power play unit as Larkin, but at least we’ll get exposure to both groups as he resides on the second unit.
The sixth overall pick of the 2018 draft hasn’t made a ton of noise so far in his NHL career, but he’s actually been solid given how poor Detroit’s offense has been in his brief tenure. Last season, he appeared in just 28 games but scored eight goals and 15 points in that time with 60 shots on goal. He’s yet to score in six games this season, but also has three assists in six games while he’s tallied nine goals and 21 points in 43 career NHL games to this point.
The kid is going to develop. This is a player that racked up 44 goals across just 57 games in his final season of junior in the 2017-18 campaign. He also enhanced his draft stock with seven goals and eight points in as many games at the World Junior Championships that season as well.
It appears Steve Yzerman and Jess Blashill are looking to get him going while putting him alongside their best player, and we’ll look for that spot to bear fruit in this one tonight.
W – Jonathan Marchessault (VGK) – $6,100 vs. ANH
We’ll fade the big boys such as Max Pacioretty and Mark Stone for the Knights tonight and once again slide down to the second line where Marchessault will skate with Karlsson this evening. We’ll also get exposure to the team’s second power play unit with Marchessault.
Like Karlsson, he too had a big night when we rostered him two games back against the Kings as he notched a goal, two points and three shots on goal in that one. He’s enjoying a fine season with two goals and eight points in nine games, but this guy has much more to bring to the table in terms of shots and goals scored.
I mentioned last week that he was due for some positive shooting rate regression, and with his goal that night he is at 10% for the season, nearly right in line with his 10.6% career mark. That said, he still has just 20 shots in nine games, good for 2.22 shots per game. Over the last three seasons, Marchessault’s 781 shots on goal were the ninth-most in the NHL in that span while he averaged 3.47 shots per game in that time as well.
So, while his shooting rate is fairly normal at the moment, the fact that we should start seeing many more pucks on goal off his stick should, in theory, lead to more goals scored moving forward. The low shot total is unexplainable from my vantage point, but he’ll get that sorted as we move along as it’s still early in the season.
Throw in the elite matchup with the visiting Ducks and Marchessault has another fine opportunity to get back on the scoresheet in this one tonight.
D – Shea Theodore (VGK) – $6,400 vs. ANH
Here’s a guy that should see some ownership tonight, especially with Alex Pietrangelo unlikely to play once again tonight.
Theodore is a better cash look than he is in GPPs, however I had plenty of money to spend and I figured I would go out and grab his high floor in what could easily amount to a multi-point effort in this one tonight.
The 25-year-old will actually face his former team tonight as he was selected by the Golden Knights from the Ducks in the expansion draft, a move the Ducks certainly want back at this point. He’s off to an excellent start to the season, notching three goals and nine points with 34 shots in nine games. He’s shooting at what I believe is a little bit of an unsustainable 8.8% clip, but we’ll see moving forward.
While the shooting rate is on the high side for a defenseman, Theodore actually hasn’t scored over his last five games despite taking 18 shots on goal in that time, or 3.6 shots per game. He does, however, carry a three-game assist streak into this one and has been held pointless in just two of nine games so far this season.
Let’s look for the impressive young rearguard to burn his former club with authority tonight.
D – Roman Josi (NSH) – $6,600 vs. TB
The Lightning and Preds get together for a Central Division clash tonight in Nashville, but I’m going to pivot to the home side here for a potential upset, or at least some production from their top guns.
That certainly includes Josi despite a little bit of a slow start on the heels of taking home Norris Trophy honors last season.
The 30-year-old Josi has tallied two goals and six points in 12 games, but also has fired 41 shots on goal in that time with another 22 blocks as well. Clearly, the peripherals are just fine, but we’ll need some positive offensive regression to kick in tonight.
His shooting rate isn’t astronomically low, but his current 4.9% mark would go down as a career-low if the season ended today while it’s well off his 6.3% career mark. He hasn’t finished under 5.5% in each of his last seven seasons.
It’s certainly a Predators team that needs to aim for more consistent offense. They have scored just once in each of their last two games and enter this one ranked 27th with just 2.42 goals per game on the season while their power play is once again scuffling at just 15.6% on the season, good for a share of 21st league wide.
Let’s look for Josi to bring that high floor to the table, but getting closer to his ceiling will be much more appreciated.
<h3<UTIL – Filip Forsberg (NSH) – $7,300 vs. TB
Certainly Forsberg isn’t to blame for the Predators’ slow offensive start to the season.
The Swedish sniper has tallied six goals and 11 points in 12 games on the season to go along with 48 shots on goal. He’s been held off the scoresheet in back-to-back games entering this one, but also showed his ceiling with a two-goal, five-point effort three games back against the Panthers.
When you look at the surface numbers, you’ll see this Tampa Bay Lightning defense ranked first with just 1.90 goals against per game. Their peripherals are closer to the middle of the pack, however, but look no further than the difference between actual and expected goals against at 5v5 this season.
Their 1.28 goals against per/60 at 5v5 this season is by far the best number in the league, but it’s far below their 1.97 expected mark, which ranks them 11th in the league. Still a solid number for sure, but considering last season’s top 5v5 defense was the Boston Bruins with 1.90 goals against/60 at 5v5, the Lightning have plenty of regression on the table when it comes to their even-strength defense.
That’s what we’ll be targeting with this three-man Predators stack tonight.
UTIL – Viktor Arvidsson (NSH) – $5,700 vs. TB
Completing this stack is one of my favorite players on this slate in Viktor Arvidsson.
I would expect ownership to be low on a player that has just two goals and five assists in 12 games on the season, but man does there appear to be player of positive regression on tap here.
Keep in mind Arvidsson has just those two goals despite putting 41 shots on goal. That 4.9% shooting rate is less than half of his 11.9% career mark while he’s never finished a full NHL season below 11.7%. For what it’s worth, he shot at just 5.8% in 56 games in the 2015-16 season, but that just ain’t happening again.
His 109 goals over the four seasons prior to this one ranks him 31st in the league. That might not sound overly great, but it’s more than Max Pacioretty, Forsberg, Aleksander Barkov and Kyle Connor in that same time with similar games played, just to name a few. That should give his goal-scoring prowess some more substance.
He’s just not going to go much longer at all before finding twine again. If the Tampa Bay defense in fact hits some regression tonight, I am loving our upside with Arvidsson at suspected low ownership.
G – Martin Jones (SJ) – $6,800 vs. LA
We have a rivalry game on tap with the Sharks and Kings going at it, and if Martin Jones isn’t a GPP goaltender these days, I don’t know who is.
He’s been wildly inconsistent for some time now, and he’ll enter this one sporting a ghastly 3.87 GAA and .876 Sv% across six outings while playing behind one of the worst defensive clubs in the league.
The upside in GPPs is clear, however. The Sharks rank 28th while allowing 32.7 shots per game on the season, and while the Kings rank 23rd with 28.6 shots per game themselves, he should be afforded the opportunity to make some saves in this one.
There’s also the fact the Kings are scoring more goals than warranted. They rank 18th in overall offense, but also dead last in scoring chances for/60, 30th in high-danger chances for and 29th in expected goals for/60 at 5v5. Their 2.19 goals per/60 at 5v5 this season are above their 1.78 expected mark.
So, while we’re rostering one of the weaker netminders in the league over the last couple of seasons, the Kings aren’t exactly an offensive juggernaut. We’ll roll the dice on the scuffling veteran in this favorable matchup tonight.