Via a late goal from Patrick Kane in Chicago’s 4-2 loss to Vegas, last night’s NHL FanDuel Picks squeezed its way into the cash. Thanks to John Tavares’ hat trick and four-point night, the lineup was able to overcome disappointing performances from players like Nick Schmaltz, Jason Zucker, Jared Spurgeon and Duncan Keith. That said, that’s back-to-back profitable lineups so let’s make it three straight on tonight’s two-game slate!
C – Brayden Schenn (STL) – $6,200 vs. CGY
Schenn has enjoyed a fruitful start to the season in his new digs in St. Louis. The former Flyer has recorded seven points in nine games on 29 shots and he will skate in between Jaden Schwartz and Vladimir Tarasenko on the Blues’ top line tonight. The Blues need to get things going on the power play where they have scored at just a 14.3% clip in the early going, but Schenn was part of a three-way tie for the league lead in power play tallies last season with 17. It’s only a matter of time before this unit begins to click and a home date with a Flames team playing their second game in as many nights should produce some offense tonight.
C – Ryan O’Reilly (BUF) – $5,500 vs. CLS
The Sabres are another team playing on back-to-back nights, but O’Reilly makes for a real nice lower owned play on this slate. The veteran centerman has a real nice floor as he has taken 27 shots across ten games and has seven points, two power play goals and ten blocks in that time frame as well. The Blue Jackets have only given up 2.63 goals per game this season, but with O’Reilly’s cross-category upside combined with his 20:41 of average ice time per game (3:48 on the power play) I look forward to O’Reilly providing his solid floor and high ceiling as a lower owned player tonight.
W – Jaden Schwartz (STL) – $6,000 vs. CGY
It’s a calculated risk taking Schwartz and leaving Tarasenko out of the lineup, but unless we Tarasenko scores a couple of unassisted goals we will have enough exposure to him not to get hurt by a big performance from the Russian. Besides, Schwartz has notched six goals, 13 points and 24 shots to go with five blocks across nine games this season. Those 13 points are good for third best in the NHL and he should be able to use his speed and skill tonight to keep producing against a tired Flames team and backup goaltender Eddie Lack.
W – Artemi Panarin (CLS) – $7,800 vs. BUF
Panarin will be a very high owned player on tonight’s slate, but he and his Blue Jackets’ teammates have an excellent matchup against the Sabres tonight. The Sabres are a lot like the Flames in the sense that they are playing their second game in as many nights and will likely throw their backup into action tonight as Chad Johnson is the Sabres’ projected starter in goal. Panarin is playing big minutes for the Blue Jackets with 20:33 of average ice time per game, 3:04 of which has come on the power play. He has nine points on 23 shots in nine games so let’s lock the talented Russian into this lineup tonight.
W – Cam Atkinson (CLS) – $7,100 vs. BUF
Teaming up with Panarin at even strength and on the power play is winger Cam Atkinson. Atkinson has just three points on the season, but all of those were goals and he has taken 13 shots over his last three games. Atkinson is no stranger to shooting the puck as he recorded a career-high 240 shots on goal last season to go along with career highs in goals (35) and points (62). He and Panarin should be a very lethal duo tonight on home ice against the Sabres.
W – Josh Anderson (CLS) – $3,600 vs. BUF
The third member of this Blue Jackets’ club in this lineup will come a little further down the pecking order, but Anderson could provide plenty of value in this spot. After missing a couple games while holding out for a new contract to begin the season, Anderson has recorded three points on ten shots over his last four games. Despite skating on the third line, Anderson has played as much as 17:36 in a game this season and could make his way onto the power play after scoring 13 goals on 160 shots as a rookie last season.
D – Alex Pietrangelo (STL) – $6,300 vs. CGY
The three-man Blues’ stack is complete here with Pietrangelo and we should have enough coverage around Tarasenko to make a fade worth it here. Pietrangelo is playing like he wants to win the Norris Trophy this season as he has recorded three goals, 11 points, 36 shots and 14 blocks in only nine games this season. Those 36 shots are the most in the NHL by a defenseman and he should get plenty more against a Flames team that ranks 27th by yielding 34.8 shots per game this season.
D – Victor Antipin (BUF) – $3,500 vs. CLS
A nice little mini-stack on the Sabres’ top power play unit tonight could be had with Antipin and O’Reilly. The rookie defenseman recorded an assist and three shots on goal in last night’s victory over the Red Wings and is mostly in the lineup due to his offensive upside. Last season in the KHL, Antipin recorded 24 points in 59 games but also added seven goals and 11 points in 18 playoff games. He has a good amount of offensive upside and makes for a real nice GPP look on tonight’s slate.
G – Jake Allen (STL) – $8,900 vs. CGY
By no means has Allen been a rock for the Blues this season, but he sports a decent .912 save percentage and I like his chances of getting the win tonight against the Flames. The Blues are only giving up 2.67 goals per game which is 10th in the NHL while they are a very strong team on home ice as well. The Blues are a clean 2-0-0 at home this season and went 24-12-5 at home last season. I like the Blues chances to score some goals tonight and Allen should be able to do enough to secure a victory on home ice as well.