It wasn’t a great lineup last night, but there was only eight goals scored on the slate and we missed on most of them. We got an OT penalty shot goal from William Nylander while Darcy Kuemper notched a 30-save win which had him eclipse value for us. Drew Doughty also picked up an assist on both of L.A.’s goals. That said, not much else was done in the lineup so we will look ahead to tonight’s massive 15-game slate and put together a GPP lineup.
C – Nicklas Backstrom (WAS) – $7,000 vs. FLA
The Florida Panthers are coming off a 6-1 blowout loss to the Stars and lost James Reimer in the process, so they will go to third string goaltender Harri Sateri, who yielded those six goals, for tonight’s contest against the Capitals. I think this is a great matchup for Backstrom and the Caps, but in a twist Backstrom will move down onto the second line tonight and skate with Andre Burakovsky and T.J. Oshie. He isn’t having his best season with 37 points in 47 games, but he has a big-time opportunity tonight against the Panthers and their 27th-ranked defense.
C – Dylan Larkin (DET) – $6,400 vs. CHI
Larkin is a nice GPP look tonight on a big slate as the Red Wings host the Blackhawks. Chicago is coming off a hard-fought loss to the Maple Leafs and will start Anton Forsberg on back-to-back nights tonight. Forsberg has been brutal on the road, going 2-4-2 with a 3.66 GAA and an .891 Sv% in eight starts and ten appearances. Enter Larkin who has 38 points on the season and three points over his last three games. He centers the second line and second power play unit and his speed and skill should give the Blackhawks’ back end a real tough go tonight.
W – T.J. Oshie (WAS) – $5,300 vs. FLA
Oshie is struggling to score goals, which is exactly why he is being paired with Backstrom tonight and also why we should get him at reasonable ownership as well in a fantastic matchup. He does have three assists over his last five games and considering his role on that talented top power play unit, it shouldn’t be long at all before he is back on the board. He still has 11 goals for the season and has dealt with injuries for most of it.
W – Tyler Bertuzzi (DET) – $3,500 vs. CHI
I really believe Bertuzzi provides one of, if not the most value upside on tonight’s slate. He skates with Larkin at 5v5 and at even strength and has been producing at a high level lately with five points over his last five games. He inexplicably missed two open nets late in Tuesday’s loss to the Flyers, so this guy is certainly getting his chances. The young rookie now has nine points and 29 shots on the season and is getting a big opportunity in a top-six role.
W – Viktor Arvidsson (NSH) – $6,400 vs. NJ
Keeping in the GPP theme, Arvidsson should be able to be had at low ownership tonight in a great matchup. The Preds take on the Devils, a team this is also starting a third string goaltender tonight in Ken Appleby. Appleby has not been good at the AHL level this season while posting a 3.21 GAA and an .888 Sv%, so I like me some Preds exposure tonight. Arvidsson has two goals and an assist over his last three games and should put plenty of pucks on goal against a struggling Devils team as he has 136 shots for the season.
W – James Neal (VGK) – $7,400 vs. NYI
Neal is a one-off play in this lineup but he has big-time opportunity tonight against the Golden Knights. The Islanders are the worst defense in the NHL and they are also the worst on the road where they yield a whopping 3.73 goals per game. Neal is having an outstanding season for the surging Golden Knights with 22 goals on 139 shots. Vegas averages 3.70 goals per game at home, so it’s nice to grab some high-upside exposure in this favorable matchup.
D – John Carlson (WAS) – $5,700 vs. FLA
Considering the season he is having, Carlson should see some ownership tonight but he has a nice opportunity in front of him against the Panthers. He is, of course, the anchor of the top power play unit, a unit that includes the aforementioned Backstrom and Oshie. With Alex Ovechkin likely to see lots of ownership it’s nice to have plenty of exposure to that first unit power play as this stack has infinite upside tonight.
D – P.K. Subban (NSH) – $5,800 vs. NJ
P.K. Subban is on a roll right now and has a very nice matchup against Ken Appleby and the Devils tonight. The Devils have averaged 3.55 goals against per game over their last 11, so the Preds should be able to create some offense tonight. Subban has scored in back-to-back games and skates on the second power play unit, the same unit that Arvidsson resides on. Look for a sneaky night from the Predators’ offense.
G – Jacob Markstrom (VAN) – $7,400 vs. BUF
Here is another GPP look as Markstrom and the Canucks take on the visiting Buffalo Sabres. He has plenty of value upside tonight against the NHL’s worst offense as he has played well of late too. Markstrom owns a .909 Sv% for the season, but has allowed two goals or less in five of his last seven starts. The Canucks offense should also be able to give him some goal support as the Sabres rank 28th in team defense as well.