It was not a good night for our FanDuel NHL Picks. Aside from Brayden Point and Ondrej Palat hooking up for a goal, it was a very shaky night on a night where the underdogs prevailed. Let’s look to rebound on a night where we have five games to take in.
C – Connor McDavid (EDM) -$9,000 vs. ARI
McDavid is the most expensive player and will be a highly owned player on the slate tonight, but he clearly has a big upside tonight against the Coyotes. The owner of 48 points in 44 games, McDavid will take on one of the league’s very worst defenses tonight in Arizona. The Coyotes yield 3.44 goals per game, with the Islanders being the only team behind them. Regardless, number 97 should be free to rack up multiple points tonight.
C – Aleksander Barkov (FLA) – $7,100 vs. CGY
Barkov has established himself as one of the elite centermen in the NHL, and tonight he has a nice opportunity against the Flames. The Panthers are an excellent offense at home, averaging 3.37 goals per game (9th) while the Flames are playing on back-to-back nights and will be starting rookie David Rittich between the pipes. Barkov enters play with six points and 21 shots over his last three games, so let’s ride the youngster while he’s hot.
W – Leon Draisaitl (EDM) – $6,500 vs. ARI
It appears Draisaitl has been moved back up onto the right wing of McDavid so let’s go ahead and roster the dynamic duo. He sports 34 points in 40 games on the season and has taken 99 shots on goal as well. With Draisaitl skating with 97 at both 5v5 and on the Oilers’ top power play unit, I will disregard his spotty recent production and use him with confidence tonight in a favorable spot.
W – Evgenii Dadonov (FLA) – $4,800 vs. CGY
In his first season in the NHL Dadonov has been entrusted with first line duties at both 5v5 and on the power play alongside Barkov. He has handled the responsibility well with 24 points in 34 games while scoring three of his seven goals on the power play. He has fired 72 shots on goal and has an assist in each of his last three games. If Barkov can stay hot tonight the production for Dadonov should continue as well.
W – Matthew Tkachuk (CGY) – $5,600 vs. FLA
As good as the Panthers are at home offensively, they have been very poor defensively at the same time. Florida’s 3.37 goals against per game at home has them ranked 26th in the league. Tkachuk scored a goal in last night’s win in Tampa Bay and he now has five points over his last five games as a result. There is plenty of reason you could go with a Flames stack tonight in Florida, but we will go with Tkachuk as a one off and live with his second line and first unit power play exposure.
W – Jack Roslovic (WPG) – $3,000 vs. CHI
Here is a guy perhaps you’ve never heard of. Roslovic is a 2015 first round pick who will play his third career NHL game tonight in Chicago. While he is a fourth line player at even strength, he receives first unit power play duties with the Jets’ big guns. He has seen an average of 2:11 of ice time on that power play over his first two games, albeit with nothing to show for it. However, at the minimum price, Roslovic is certainly worth the gamble against a poor Hawks back end.
D – Oscar Klefbom (EDM) – $4,800 vs. ARI
Klefbom is back onto the Oilers’ top power play unit alongside McDavid and Draisaitl. Like most Oilers, Klefbom is enduring a down season after a quality campaign a year ago, but in a stack he works just fine tonight. He has blasted 121 shots on goal this season and blocked 84, so he brings a solid floor with him into action tonight. He has plenty of upside to get on the board tonight against the Coyotes.
D – Keith Yandle (FLA) – $4,700 vs. CGY
Yandle completes another three-man stack in this lineup. He operates as the lone defenseman on the Panthers’ top power play unit and skates big-time minutes for head coach Bob Boughner. He has assist in back-to-back contests to go along with nine shots on goal. He has 20 helpers on the season and I will look for a couple more tonight, hopefully with Barkov and/or Dadonov getting the goals.
G – Sergei Bobrovsky (CLS) – $9,000 vs. VAN
Bobrovsky played last night in Buffalo, so it’s possible that he gets the night off tonight against the Canucks. However, it’s also possible the Jackets start him with Bobrovsky owning a .945 Sv% in five January starts. After all, he is taking on the Canucks and their 28th ranked offense on home ice. The Blue Jackets have struggled to score themselves, but I believe a shutout is a real possibility tonight for the Russian superstar.