It was simply an unfortunate night last night with our DraftKings NHL Picks. The two steams we stacked (L.A., STL) scored five goals apiece, however both of these teams had a player score hat trick, players that weren’t in our lineup. Sometimes you can be right and still be wrong in this game and last night was a perfect example of that. Let’s move on to tonight’s busy nine-game slate!
C – John Tavares (NYI) – $6,700 vs. NYR
It has been a bit of an offensive struggle for the Islanders so far this season, especially on the power play. The Islanders have tallied just 2.50 goals per game and have yet to score with the man advantage, but that could all change tonight against the Rangers. New York has struggled with goal prevention so far this season as they have yielded 3.71 goals per game (23rd) and have killed penalties at just a 74.1% clip (30th). Henrik Lundqvist is shaky at best, so let’s target the Rangers tonight. Tavares has recorded points in just one game this season, but the All-Star pivot had 66 points on 260 shots on goal last season and will appear on the scoresheet imminently.
C – Patrice Bergeron (BOS) – $6,400 vs. VAN
Bergeron should make his season debut tonight against the Canucks after missing the Bruins first five games with a lower-body injury suffered in the preseason. His return would be a big boost to the Bruins’ offense, a group that ranks 20th with 2.80 goals per game on the season. Bergeron was a shot on goal machine last season, throwing 302 shots on goal, but his 7% shooting percentage was his lowest mark since the 08’/09’ campaign. He and Brad Marchand could reignite their chemistry this evening should Bergeron indeed lace em’ up.
*Replacement – Mika Zibanejad (NYR) – $6,600 vs. NYI
W – Brad Marchand (BOS) – $7,600 vs. VAN
Marchand has enjoyed a strong start to the season even with Bergeron sidelined as he has tallied three goals and three assists on ten shots across five games. The shot total is fairly low, but there is no doubt Marchand can be counted on for consistent production once again this season. Coming off a career-high 39 goals and 85 points, Marchand is one of the most consistent fantasy producers there is while the Bruins are in a nice spot tonight against the visiting Canucks.
W – Jordan Eberle (NYI) – $5,400 vs. NYR
The next couple players are due for some better puck luck beginning here with Eberle. Riding shotgun next to Tavares on the team’s top line and top power play unit, Eberle has taken 19 shots on goal in five games and has yet to find twine. He is routinely seeing upwards of 18-19 minutes of ice next to Tavares, so I don’t expect the slump to last much longer. Besides, the Islanders’ power play and Eberle’s shooting percentage both won’t be sitting at 0.0% much longer, either.
W – Rick Nash (NYR) – $5,000 vs. NYI
The second player due for some better puck luck is Zibanejad’s left winger Rick Nash. Nash was recently swapped with Chris Kreider onto the team’s top line, a spot that should see him earn some more points moving forward. The veteran has taken 29 shots in seven games and has just a single goal to show for it. Nash isn’t the same point producer he was in the past, but he is certainly still a threat and with top line minutes and top power play minutes he should be in for some production moving forward.
D – Kevin Shattenkirk (NYR) – $5,200 vs. NYI
Shattenkirk has enjoyed his new digs in New York as he has tallied six points in seven games while taking 17 shots on goal in that span as well. He is averaging just short of five minutes per game with the man advantage is unquestionably the quarterback of the Rangers’ productive top unit. Should this unit click again tonight, this three-man Rangers’ stacks should be a high scoring one indeed.
D – Ryan Pulock (NYI) – $2,700 vs. NYR
Pulock will be a real nice GPP look tonight as he makes his season debut against the Rangers. Known for his offensive abilities and booming shot, Pulock will play on the Islanders’ top power play unit which makes for a nice three-man stack with Tavares and Eberle above. Pulock scored 15 goals and 46 points across 55 AHL games as a 22-year-old last season and the Islanders are inserting him into the lineup almost solely to give their power play a shot in the arm. He may not log a ton of minutes, but he is going to shoot the puck and could be a very sneaky look on tonight’s big slate.
G – Mike Smith (CGY) – $7,900 vs. CAR
I’m not sure why, but the Flames continue to give up plenty of shots on goal despite sporting a very formidable top four defensive group. Nonetheless, the extra work hasn’t faced Smith as he enters play tonight sporting a nice .929 save percentage while winning four of six starts on the season. The Hurricanes just put up five goals on the Oilers, but that was against a backup goaltender and a defense that is not as good as the one Calgary boasts. Look for Smith to have a real steady game on home ice against a team that is so-so at best offensively.
UTIL – Kenny Agostino (BOS) – $2,700 vs. VAN
Agostino is a player who absolutely tears up the AHL but can’t seem to stick in the NHL. Last season, he tallied 83 points in 65 AHL games to lead the league in scoring by whopping 15 points. He has already recorded seven points in three AHL games this year and will make his season debut tonight for the Bruins. While he is projected to skate on the fourth line, Agostino’s offensive skills will be utilized on the Bruins’ top power play unit with the aforementioned Bergeron and Marchand, so he could provide massive value given his very cheap price tonight.