Every Tuesday and Thursday I will be providing my recommended player picks for your daily fantasy hockey lineups. The goal is to help you to the top of the leaderboards in FanDuel and DraftKings tournament play.
As we close out the month of November, we have a fairly quiet Thursday night of National Hockey League action, with just seven games on deck. The Nashville Predators, Calgary Flames and Minnesota Wild are tonight’s biggest favorites, and the Montreal Canadiens are the only team playing on the tail end of a back-to-back.
NOTE: Make sure to check the RotoGrinders Starting Goalies Page prior to game time, to confirm that the goalies listed below are starting.
Devan Dubnyk, Minnesota Wild - The Minnesota Wild are allowing an average of 32.2 shots against per game, but they are one of the best teams in the National Hockey League at limiting scoring chances and suppressing high-danger shots on goal. This means Devan Dubnyk is likely to see over 30 shots again tonight, but most of these shots will not be dangerous, putting him in a position to be one of the higher scoring goalies on the night. A win and a ton of saves is the key in tournament play, and Dubnyk should come away with both this evening at the Xcel Energy Center.
Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawks - The Dallas Stars have a been a sound defensive team this year under the tutelage of Coach Ken Hitchcock, and I rarely look to pick on them, however they have really struggled away from home, posting a 4-8-1 record, while allowing the eighth-most goals against per game. On the flip side of this game, Patrick Kane (16 PTS in 11 GP) and the Chicago Blackhawks are dynamite on home ice (seventh-most goals per game in the National Hockey League). Optically this matchup may not appear all that appealing, which should hopefully keep Kane and his linemates ownership down tonight in large field tournaments. Kane is a solid play as a one-off, and his line is inexpensive to stack if you want to load up this trio in GPPs.
Jason Spezza, Dallas Stars – Not only is Jason Spezza now skating alongside super star Tyler Seguin, he and the Dallas Stars offense also have a plus matchup on deck. The Chicago Blackhawks have been a defensive dumpster fire this year, sitting 28th overall in both CA/60 and HDCA/60, and 27th in SCA/60. With the Stars playing on the road and with their lack of offensive production this year, I think we see Spezza and the Stars’ potent second line fly under the radar tonight in large field tournaments.
Jesse Puljujarvi, Edmonton Oilers - The Edmonton Oilers may have come away with the win on Tuesday night over the Arizona Coyotes, but they did not look all that impressive. The lack of scoring production from the top line has resulted in Edmonton Oilers coach Todd McLellan shuffling his lines once again, promoting Jesse Puljujarvi to the Oilers number one line alongside Connor McDavid. The Toronto Maple Leafs are not an easy team to play, thanks to their speed and fast paced style, but the Oilers’ top line can certainly keep up, and they should have plenty of scoring opportunities tonight at the Rogers Place, making Puljujarvi one of the top point-per-dollar plays on the entire slate.
Ryan Suter, Minnesota Wild - The Vegas Golden Knights continue to win games (15-7-1) and score goals (third-most goals per game), but they are not playing sound defensive hockey. The Golden Knights are a below average defensive team in most relevant categories and although their goalies have played well, they do not have good goaltending on the whole with Marc-Andre Fleury remaining out due to a concussion. All of this means the Minnesota Wild are a team we can target tonight on this Thursday evening. The problem with the Wild’s offense is that they have multiple lines that can score, and no real elite offensive weapons, so perhaps we are best to look to their blue line. Ryan Suter soaks up a ton of minutes at both even strength on the Wild’s top power play unit (averaging over 27 minutes per game), and he has multi-point upside in this plus matchup on home ice.