Welcome a fresh week of NHL DFS! We have a six-game Monday night slate ahead of us so let’s go ahead and get our week started on the right foot!
C – Auston Matthews (TOR) – $8,000 vs. ARI
Matthews and the Maple Leafs host the league-worst Arizona Coyotes tonight, which means Matthews will see plenty of ownership, but for good reason. He returned from a four-game absence to score two goals Saturday night in Montreal and is now up to 12 goals and 21 points in 17 games this season. He was somewhat eased back into action as he skated under 17 minutes on Saturday, but should get back up the 19-20 minute mark tonight against Arizona. Toronto is the league’s second highest scoring team at 3.71 goals per game and the Coyotes rank last with 3.82 goals against per game.
C – Logan Couture (SJ) – $6,200 vs. ANH
The Sharks host their California counterpart tonight in San Jose as the Anaheim Ducks pay a visit to the SAP Center. The Ducks have been good lately, but will be playing their second game in as many nights tonight and will likely be starting backup goaltender Reto Berra as well. Couture is having a very strong season with ten goals and 15 points in 18 games while three of those goals have come on the power play and one while shorthanded. He logs first unit power play ice time as well and has easily been the Sharks’ most consistent offensive threat this season.
W – William Nylander (TOR) – $6,200 vs. ARI
Despite just one goal over his last 13 games, I will gladly take Nylander tonight as he plays his best hockey alongside Auston Matthews. Nylander still has 14 points on 59 shots this season and is most certainly due to go on a scoring binge as he has scored that one goal over his last 34 shots. Of course that 2.9% shooting percentage is due for an increase as he skates next to Matthews at both even strength and on the power play.
W – Tomas Hertl (SJ) – $4,600 vs. ANH
Skating on the Sharks’ second line with Couture is Hertl who has been fairly quiet lately but gets plenty of opportunities to produce offense. He has points in just two of his last eight games, but he skates 18 minutes a night and gets almost three minutes per night on the Sharks’ second unit power play where he has a scored two of his three goals this season. He is better than a three-goal player, so let’s grab the Couture/Hertl mini-stack tonight.
W – Mitch Marner (TOR) – $5,100 vs. ARI
After a very poor start to the season Marner is playing his best hockey these days but amazingly has just two goals on the season. He does have 13 assists and nine points over his last seven games, however. Marner plays on the Leafs top power play unit and remains a very dangerous player with the puck on his stick and will be difficult for a young Coyotes team to handle tonight on home ice.
D – Jake Gardiner (TOR) – $3,500 vs. ARI
The Maple Leafs’ four-man stack is complete here with Gardiner. Gardiner has been rather quiet offensively this season with just one goal and 22 shots, but he has tallied seven assists and is the lone defenseman on the Leafs’ second unit power play with his three teammates listed above. Simply put, if this power play unit and/or the Leafs have a big night against a weak Coyotes defense this could be a nice stack to have.
D – Seth Jones (CLS) – $5,300 vs. BUF
The Blue Jackets have switched up their power play units and one of those switches has been with Jones as he has moved up onto the top grouping where Atkinson resides. Jones has been solid all around this season with 12 points, 58 shots and 33 blocks across 20 games. He leads all Blue Jackets’ skaters with 24:08 of ice time per game and his 2:13 per game on the power play will begin to increase now that he is on the top unit.
G – Sergei Bobrovsky (CLS) – $7,800 vs. BUF
By now you know that Bobrovsky is one of the NHL’s top goaltenders and he has been simply sensational as of late. He enters play tonight with a sparkling .933 save percentage on the season, but has allowed just two goals over his last three starts combined. Besides, the Sabres rank dead last with just 2.30 goals per game this season and their 15.6% power play ranks 27th, so let’s go with the reigning Vezina Trophy winner tonight against the lowly Sabres.
UTIL – Chandler Stephenson (WAS) – $3,300 vs. CGY
I don’t expect a ton of offense in this game, but Stephenson sure has a nice opportunity in a top six role alongside Niklas Backstrom and T.J. Oshie. He has six points in 12 games on the season, but we would very much like to see him take more than the six shots he has in those 12 games. Nonetheless, if you’re looking for value Stephenson could be your guy due to his favorable position on the Capitals’ depth chart tonight against the Flames.