Last night’s FanDuel NHL Picks were pretty good in terms of our position players, but Devan Dubnyk let us down again in goal. The Wild blew a late lead and went on to lose in overtime which could very well have pushed us out of the money. Our Bruins stack did well and Aaron Ekblad scored a goal on the back end, albeit our Predators stack wasn’t terrible productive either. We will look for improvement on tonight’s large 11-game slate.
C – Evgeni Malkin (PIT) – $9,200 vs. NYI
It’s extremely tough not to consider Malkin the top player on tonight’s slate. Since January 1st, Malkin’s 53 points leads all NHLers with the next closest coming in at 44 points in that span. He’s notched 13 points over his last eight games and 42 points over his last 25. He takes on the league’s worst defense tonight in New York as well as the league’s worst home defense by a mile with 3.76 goals against per game. Let’s use the white-hot Malkin without hesitation.
C – Dylan Larkin (DET) – $5,900 vs. PHI
The Penguins are both expensive and will be highly owned, so we will look to go cheaper and lower owned to fill out the lineup. That begins here with Larkin who has a solid home matchup tonight against the Flyers. Detroit has lost 10 in a row, but nine of those came on the road and they will certainly happy to be back at home tonight. They face a familiar face in Petr Mrazek who sports a brutal .888 Sv% in 11 starts with the Flyers since being traded, so Larkin along with his 50 points on 199 shots this season could be in for some low-owned production this evening.
W – Patric Hornqvist (PIT) – $6,600 vs. NYI
Hornqvist is coming off his best performance of the season. In last Thursday’s win in Montreal, Hornqvist scored a pair of goal, added an assist and fired 10 shots on goal. The two goals gives him 22 on the year, 12 of which have come on the power play. He’s also taken 210 shots in just 60 games and is averaging more than five shots per game over his last 10. He skates with Malkin on the Pens’ second line as well as the top power play unit which is clicking at 25.5% on the road, the best mark in the NHL.
W – Anthony Mantha (DET) – $4,700 vs. PHI
I believe we are getting Mantha at a real nice discount tonight. He and Larkin will form a 5v5 and power play mini-stack tonight against a Flyers team that ranks 27th in penalty killing at just 75.6%. Mantha has notched 23 goals this season, nine of which have come on the power play, on 167 shots across 70 games this season. He is one of the top young pure goal scorers in the league, so I like his upside at low ownership as a result.
W – Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (EDM) – $6,300 vs. CAR
Another team likely to fly under the radar tonight is the Edmonton Oilers as they visit the Carolina Hurricanes. Carolina is essentially out of the playoff race in the East, so they are going to roll with Scott Darling in goal who has been brutal this season. Darling sports an .889 Sv% for the season and has not posted a save percentage over .880 in any month since November. Nugent-Hopkins flanks Connor McDavid at 5v5 and on the power play and has seven points over his last eight games as a result.
W – Ty Rattie (EDM) – $3,500 vs. CAR
This guy will be very low owned but has huge upside at this price in this matchup. Rattie is getting a shot to the right of McDavid at 5v5 while he has also seen some second unit power play time as well. The results have been excellent as he has scored twice and added an assist on nine shots over his last two games. Against one of the league’s worst goalies and next to one of the league’s best players, Rattie makes perfect sense as a real nice value play tonight.
D – Kris Letang (PIT) – $6,400 vs. NYI
We have a three-man Penguins stack complete here with the addition of Letang. Obviously, he is a high-upside play with a nice floor in the form of 44 points and 199 shots across 69 games on the season. He has scored one goal and added five assists over his last seven games and should have a field day against the Islanders tonight. He also completes a three-man PP1 stack tonight against the Islanders and their league-worst 74.9% mark on the penalty kill.
D – Ethan Bear (EDM) – $3,500 vs. CAR
Bear completes a very cost-efficient, high-upside, low-owned stack tonight against the Hurricanes. The best part about Bear’s upside is the fact he skates as the lone defenseman on the Oilers’ top power play unit, where he’s notched one of his two assists in nine games this season. Bear doesn’t have the stats that are going to stand out in those nine games, but as long as he skates on the top power play unit he has plenty of upside, especially against the Hurricanes and their 24th-ranked penalty kill tonight.
G – Marc-Andre Fleury (VGK) – $8,400 vs. VAN
There are a lot of backup goalies going tonight as well as some others who aren’t in good spots, so Fleury becomes by top option as a result. There’s no denying he’s in an excellent spot as the Golden Knights host the Canucks. Vancouver has averaged just one goal per game over their last six and have been shut out three times in that span. Vegas owns the league’s 10th rated home defense and Fleury is coming off a 42-game shutout, so let’s roll with who I believe is the safest goaltender on the slate.