For the first Saturday in recent memory, the sports world will be left without some football. All is not lost, however, as the NHL delivers another action-packed, eleven-game schedule today. However, with the majority of the action on FanDuel centering on the nine evening games, these picks will do the same. If Winter Storm Jonas has you hunkered down somewhere, an evening of Daily Fantasy Hockey and a cold (or warm) beverage should help pass the time.
Ben Bishop – Tampa Bay Lightning - $8,900 - Bishop was outstanding against the Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday night and has now led the Tampa Bay Lightning to their seventh straight win. Bishop has posted a ridiculous 1.21 GAA and .948 SV% in his five starts this month and his 1.94 GAA on the season is the second best in the NHL this year. He cruised to an easy victory over this Florida team just last week and has a great chance at picking up 20th win of the season as the Panthers were in battle with the Chicago Blackhawks last night.
Ryan Johansen – Nashville Predators - $7,400 - Johansen stayed hot on Thursday night as he scored a goal and dished out an assist in Nashville’s 4-1 victory over the Winnipeg Jets. The former first round pick has taken full advantage of the change of scenery after being dealt from the Columbus Blue Jackets and has now posted three goals and six assists in seven games with his new team. He has a tremendous matchup on tap tonight against an Edmonton team that has allowed 2.94 goals against per game this season and that will look to push the tempo offensively. With sniper James Neal on his wing both at even strength and on the power-play, there’s no reason to expect Johansen to slow down tonight.
Patrice Bergeron – Boston Bruins - $7,000 – Bergeron picked up an assist on Thursday night against Vancouver to extend his scoring streak to three games and now leads the Bruins with 18 goals and 24 assists in 46 games. He’ll take on a Columbus Blue Jackets team that has allowed a league worst 3.23 goals against per game this season and who will once again be without net-minder Sergei Bobrovsky. Bergeron has thrived at the TD Garden this season; posting 11 goals and 15 assists in 24 home games and should see some extra space to work with now that David Krejci has returned to the Bruins lineup.
Max Pacioretty – Montreal Canadiens - $8,200 - Montreal has been an absolute disaster since starting the season with a 19-4-3 record, and while the Max Pacioretty has seemingly disappeared offensively, I’m expecting him to get things rolling tonight. Pacioretty has torched the Maple Leafs in both of their previous meetings this season; scoring three goals and adding an assists in those two games. Montreal’s Captain has started to heat up a bit lately and rather quietly has tallied five goals and four assists in his last ten games. He’s as affordable as he’s been all season and can almost approach value based on his shot volume alone.
Jason Spezza – Dallas Stars - $5,600 - While his teammates Tyler Seguin and Jamie Benn receive most of the fantasy attention (and rightfully so), it’s actually been Jason Spezza carrying the offensive load for the Stars lately. Spezza scored a goal and added an assists against Edmonton on Thursday and has now racked up 5 goals and 13 assists over his last 16 games. As an added bonus, Spezza joins Benn and Seguin on the #1 power-play unit where he should be eager to attack Colorado’s middling 80.1% penalty kill.
Dylan Larkin – Detroit Red Wings - $5,400 – While Artemi Panarin is receiving a ton of attention for the Calder Trophy, Larkin looks like he may make things interesting before all is said and done. The speedster scored a goal and added an assist against Buffalo last night and now leads Detroit with 15 goals and 17 assists (and a +23) in 46 games. Jeff Blashill has recently promoted him back to the top line alongside Henrik Zetterberg and Justin Abdelkader and he also centers the #2 power-play unit. He picked up an assist in his only other meeting with Anaheim and his modest asking price makes him a terrific option for all formats.
Torey Krug – Boston Bruins - $5,400 - Despite cooling off a bit lately, Torey Krug has established himself as the top fantasy option on the Boston blue-line at this point. While he’s only scored three goals all season, his 2.3% shooting percentage is unsustainably low and it’s only a matter of time before he starts finding the back of the net with more regularity. Krug is a staple on the point of Boston’s lethal #1 power-play unit and he should see some extra run with the man advantage against a Columbus team that happens to be the most penalized team in the NHL this season. He’s quick, aggressive and a gifted passer and you’ll be hard pressed to find a blue-liner in this price range that can matchup Krug’s upside tonight.
Shea Theodore – Anaheim Ducks - $3,300 - With their scheduled game against the Capitals last night postponed, the Ducks fled the east coast just before the blizzard arrived and were instead able to rest up before tonight’s game against the Detroit Red Wings. The injury to Cam Fowler opened the door for rookie defenseman Shea Theodore, and he’s taken full advantage of the opportunity. Theodore has picked up points in each of the last four games and has grabbed the reigns as the point man on the Ducks’ #1 power-play unit. Detroit has really struggled on their penalty kill without Drew Miller and Theodore is simply too cheap to overlook in cash games tonight.