I felt we had an excellent cash lineup in the works yesterday, but the end results certainly weren’t what we were looking for as our profit streak came to a conclusion.
While Connor McDavid notched two assists, Leon Draisaitl ended up as the better play as he scored two of the three Oilers goals on the night. Jesse Puljujarvi disappointed with just one shot on goal and Darnell Nurse did fine with an assist, two shots and a block.
I was shocked to get John Tavares and William Nylander both under 4% owned, but that duo did fine in combining for a goal, an assist, six shots and a block.
Both Bowen Byram and Nolan Patrick didn’t do much with the former registering a shot and a block and the latter posting a goose egg. Nathan MacKinnon notched an assist and six shots on goal.
Finally, Chris Driedger played well enough as he allowed just two goals on 31 shots, but lost in a shootout which capped his ceiling.
Not a horrible lineup, but it fell short and we’ll look for improved results in a cash look for tonight’s one-game slate.
FanDuel NHL DFS Picks – January 29, 2021
CAPTAIN – Patrick Kane (CHI) – $15,500 vs. CBJ
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to roster Kane as your captain in cash games tonight.
He’s bar-none the highest-floor player in this game, entering this one with three goals and seven points in eight games this season with 26 shots on goal. Kane has added a goal and three points on a Blackhawks power play that has come out of the gate like gangbusters, posting a fifth-ranked 36% mark on the season to this point, while the 5v5 offense has struggled in Chicago.
I also like the fact that he’s overdue to get back on the scoresheet after being held pointless in the team’s two-game set with the Nashville Predators earlier in the week. Despite Chicago’s struggles last season, Kane had just one stretch where he went pointless in three straight games. He also had a two-game pointless skid, but otherwise was as consistent as it gets in racking up points.
He and the ‘Hawks take on a Jackets team that is playing their second game in as many nights after a 3-2 shootout win over the Panthers on Thursday.
UTIL – Dominik Kubalik (CHI) – $14,000 vs. CBJ
Kane and Kubalik will skate on separate lines to start this one tonight, but I think it’s a good idea to get as much power play exposure as we can with these Blackhawks despite the fact that Blue Jackets have killed penalties at a sixth-ranked 88.2% mark so far this season.
On the heels of a season that saw him named as a Calder Trophy finalist thanks to tallying 30 goals in joust 68 games, Kubalik has notched two goals and five points in eight games this season while putting a hefty 26 shots on goal. He too has been dangerous on the power play, notched two goals and four points on the man advantage.
He probably won’t shooting at 19.7% again, but his current 7.7% shooting rate is certainly due for positive regression. Goal-scorers just don’t shoot under 10% all that often and I view Kubalik has more of a 15% shooter, although we’ll see how that numbers evolves as his career takes shape.
Kubalik was actually held pointless in the team’s first three games this season, so his five points have come over his last five games. He also skated well over 18 minutes in each of his last two games.
UTIL – Dylan Strome (CHI) – $11,000 vs. CBJ
We’re not going to go crazy with Blackhawks exposure in this matchup with a tough Columbus defense, but we’ll get one more piece of the power play pie here with Strome.
Strome and Kubalik will skate together on the team’s second line for this one, and also with Kane on that top power play unit. The former Arizona Coyote has an identical two-goal, five-point stat line like Kubalik, but he doesn’t shoot the puck nearly as much with 15 shots on the season.
He’s certainly been involved in the power play fun with two goals and four points on the man advantage this season, halfway to his power play total from all of last season in 58 games.
Strome’s 13.3% shooting rate on the young season is right in line with his 13% career mark, but I’ll look for him to be the distributor in this lineup with Kane and Kubalik doing the goal-scoring damage.
UTIL – Boone Jenner (CBJ) – $8,000 vs. CHI
Let’s not mistake this Blackhawks defense for a stout group, the problem is the Blue Jackets just don’t score much and their power play is struggling once again.
The Blackhawks enter this one ranked 24th in overall defense and 15th on the penalty kill while sitting 27th in scoring chances against/60, 20th in high-danger chances against/60 and 21st in expected goals against/60 at 5v5, as per Natural Stat Trick. It appears they are deserving of their surface numbers on defense so far.
But, the Jackets are tied for 22nd with just 2.50 goals per game on the season and their power play sits 27th at 9.1% on the season, so I think we gave the right amount of exposure to both clubs for this one.
For his part, Jenner is off to a fine start, notching two goals and five points himself with 14 shots in that time. While Jenner’s shot total is low, I believe he’ll start getting more pucks on goal. For his career, he’s averaging 2.4 shots per game, a number that’s plummeted to just 1.75 here in the early going. Despite a down season last year, he averaged 2.55 shots per game, but posted a shooting rate of just 6.1% — a career low.
He was due for more puck luck this season, and that’s been the case so far with 14.3% shooting rate on the season, but let’s look for more shots on goal in this one in a matchup with a Blackhawks team that ranks 30th while allowing 34.4 shots per game this season.
UTIL – Mikhail Grigorenko (CBJ) – $6,500 vs. CHI
With $6,500 left in the wallet, Grigorenko is the best bet as he will at least skate with Jenner on the team’s second power play unit while getting second-line reps with Max Domi as his center.
In his return to the NHL after departing for three seasons in the KHL, the 12th overall pick of the 2012 draft has notched a goal and two points in eight games with 10 shots on goal. I wanted to get someone with more shots under their belt such as Liam Foudy, but the price tag didn’t allow it.
Still, I don’t mind the PP2 mini-stack and everyone’s shot potential increases against this Blackhawks defense.
You wonder if there’s more to be had from Grigorenko as he tallied 41 points in 47 KHL games and notched 93 points in 102 games over his final two seasons in Russia. That’s the world’s second-best league, so you would believe he can produce more than he has so far in his return.
This matchup certainly provides an opportunity to get back on the scoresheet.