Each day I will be providing my recommended player picks for your FanDuel daily fantasy hockey lineups.
My FanDuel NHL Plays will be broken down by player positions, and will include picks for cash games (50/50s/double-ups/head-to-head) and GPPs (guaranteed prize pool tournaments).
Are you new to Daily Fantasy Hockey? Check out these strategies documents first for tips and recommendations to craft your winning FanDuel hockey lineups:
Following a busy Saturday that was filled with eleven games featuring twenty-two teams, Sunday brings us just four games. With eight teams in action, you should also note that three of those teams are playing on back-to-back nights (Canadiens, Capitals and Coyotes). If you are trying to choose between two players that you have projected to hit the same point target on a short slate, selecting the player who is not skating on back-to-back nights may be the better selection, but in hockey, I weight this contextual factor less than other sports. With the Super Bowl kicking off this evening, the NHL slate on FanDuel commences at 1 p.m. Eastern.
Make sure to check the RotoGrinders Starting Goalies Page to confirm that the goalies listed below are starting prior to game time.
Carey Price, Montreal Canadiens, $10,100 – Let’s not overthink the choice between the pipes this afternoon on a short slate. At $10,100, Price is the most expensive netminder, but he gets to face an Arizona Coyotes team that was throttled by a 7-2 yesterday at the hands of the Ottawa Senators and lost 9 of their last 10 games. During that span, the team scored just seventeen goals for an average of just 1.7 GF/GP. The Yotes are below league average in shots per game (29.4 SF/GP), but when you are paying this much for a goalie, you hope for the shutout upside that Price presents. In fact, he has done just that in two straight games and he has won three in a row while averaging 10.3 FDP per game during the streak. Lock in Price in your cash games and find value at your skater slots. The play here has more to do with the overall chances that the Canadiens have to win the game and with a “win” on FD being weighted so heavily, start Price in your cash games as he is the most likely netminder to earn the “W” on Sunday.
Writer’s Note: As of the publication of this piece, Price has not been confirmed. If he is not given the nod this afternoon, feel confident in rostering his backup, Dustin Tokarski, who costs just $6,600, and use the $3,500 savings to splurge on superstar skaters.
Other Goalies To Target (Cash Games) – Marc-Andre Fleury
Other Goalies To Target (Tournaments) – Ryan Miller
Tomas Plekanec, Montreal Canadiens, $6,300 – Your cash game lineups should start with rostering Sidney Crosby over any other superstar center, but lock in Plekanec at your second center slot. With at least one point in four straight games (six assists) and in seven of his last nine, he has averaged 4.47 FDP per game over his last ten games and has only scored less than one FDP twice during that span. This consistency is exactly what you are looking for in setting your cash game lineups. Moreover, Plekanec gets to play against a Coyotes team that is giving up the second most goals per game (3.35 GA/GP) and the sixth most shots per game this season (32.1 SA/GP) and he should start a fresh points streak this afternoon.
David Perron, Pittsburgh Penguins, $6,000 – The top value play of the day has to be Sidney Crosby’s left winger, who has been nothing short of fantastic since being traded to Pittsburgh. Despite being held off the scoreboard the last two games on the road, the first line and first power play unit winger, who skates with Crosby, Chris Kunitz (on the first line) and Patric Hornqvist (on the power play), has scored four goals and three assists in his last four home games. The Penguins’ top line typically fares better on home ice with the last line switch, and they’ll be at home for today’s contest. On an afternoon where you want to pay up for your goaltender, you will need a few value plays and Perron is the cheapest way to get exposure to three other forwards on a potent Pens’ offense that should tear up a Pekka Rinne-less Nashville Predators team.
Max Pacioretty, Montreal Canadiens, $8,800 – In what has become a theme to today’s daily plays piece, firing up your Montreal Canadiens should prove to be profitable. At $8,800, Pacioretty is the second most expensive winger available to roster this afternoon (behind Alex Ovechkin), but he has scored in two straight games and he is averaging an outstanding 5.65 FDP per game over his last ten games. In order to hit his value target of 5.18, Pacioretty does not necessarily need to record a point, as long as he earns a few pluses, but his gaudy shots per game average (second only to Ovechkin) and his high ATOI (average time on ice) is consistent enough to provide Pacioretty with a chance to reach his target score. As mentioned above, the Coyotes are in a freefall on this road trip and their defense (coupled with poor puck possession metrics) should provide the upstart Canadiens and its top scorer an opportunity to rack up at least four goals today.
Kris Letang, Pittsburgh Penguins, $7,700 – Letang is the most expensive defenseman on the board this afternoon, which makes him a fringe cash play, but outstanding tournament play, and he has all the necessary contextual factors working in his favor. The Penguins are -160 ML favorites and with an over/under at 5.5 goals, Vegas set the line to hit the over at -120. With seven points (0 Gs, 7 As) in his past three games and fourteen points (1 G, 13 As) in his last eight games, Letang is logging the third-most minutes of ice time per game in the league among defensemen (and 11th overall). With an ATOI of 26:37 in his last eight games, in addition to his outstanding point total, the superstar D-man has also recorded seventeen shots on goal. Most players will likely fade Letang at 14.0% of the salary cap, but if you find two value forwards, you can squeeze him into your cash game rosters.
Mike Green, Washington Capitals, $4,500 – If you want the flexibility to roster the high-priced skaters and netminder today, you will need to save some cap space at one of your defensemen slots. The top value play at the point is Green, who has recorded four points in his last four games (1 G, 3 As) as well as 10 SOG, which is high for a defenseman. The Vegas line has not posted yet for this game between the Blues and Capitals, but it should be a high-event matchup (and it would be wise to avoid both goalies) as each team has averaged at least 3.5 GF/GP over their last four games. Of course, the Blues have won four straight and the Caps have won just one of their last five, but you do want some exposure to this game. When you expect a high-event game, if you do not feel comfortable selecting a forward, but you still want exposure, a rule of thumb is to select the home team’s top D-man that logs the most minutes. Green should see upwards of twenty minutes of ice time and he gets you cheap exposure to Alex Ovechkin at the point on the power play.