NHL DFS Primer | Tuesday, February 16th, 2021 on DraftKings
Looking for help building line-ups for NHL DFS on DraftKings or FanDuel tonight? Let’s take a look at some of the best plays on the board for tonight’s action!
With Nashville/Dallas being scratched from the slate due to power issues in Dallas from the storms, we’re down to five games tonight, so we’ll do a breakdown of each of the five match-ups for tonight’s slate! Let’s have a look at some ways to approach line-up construction for MME formats tonight!
NY Islanders (-110) @ Buffalo, Total: 5.5
The Isles and Sabres drop the puck tonight for the second of two straight as the Sabres shake off the rust after a 15 day layoff. They didn’t get a shot on goal last night in the third period, but honestly – only having 3 shorthanded practices over a two week stretch, I think that was probably to be expected. Tonight, I prefer the Isles here, led by the top line of Barzal-Bailey-Lee, two of which skate on the top PP unit. I wouldn’t expect either of the top two lines to be too popular here given the line and the total, but the spot is a good one for them tonight in my books. On the back-end, Ryan Pulock has yet to really pop – but I think he offers one of the best risk/return trade-offs at the position at his current price point. He has a solid floor and should start to chip in with more offensive production in short order.
A fade on Buffalo altogether is worth considering. You have to push an edge somewhere and although they should have shaken off some of the rust a night ago, the Isles are a great team at defending – and the Sabres are still likely going to be a little bit rusty. If you wanted to go stacking with them with what should be mid single digits ownership levels on a 5 game slate, tonight is that night – but for me, I don’t have too much interest in it for this match-up.
Washington @ Pittsburgh (-125), Total: 6.5
The total here is as high as I’ve seen for a Penguins game in quite some time – but given that four of the last 5 games Pittsburgh has been involved in have seen 7+ goals put on the board, it’s probably the right place to set the line for tonight. I’m expecting both of the top lines here to be popular, with PIT1 leading the way as one of the highest owned stacks tonight. All three members skate on the top PP unit, and they’ve been putting up goals on the board at a great clip. I like the idea of getting significant exposure to them along with some variations of them with Malkin and/or Letang from the top PP unit.
As for the Caps, they won’t be too highly owned – though they probably should be popular tonight and I love this spot for WAS1 (or just Ovie on his own). He remains an elite producer and even though he costs a pretty penny, he’s well worth it on most nights with as high of a floor and ceiling as anyone in the game offers. D John Carlson is an interesting 1-2 stack with Ovie and quite often a manual way to go stacking with two pieces from the top PP unit (and generally, the two main drivers of production for Washington from a DFS standpoint). Either way, I love this game as one to get heavy exposure to….just know that if you follow suit, you aren’t alone!
NJ Devils @ NY Rangers (-140), Total: 5.5
This game is at the opposite end of the spectrum in terms of my interest – and if you are looking to narrow down your field, I think you can consider a fade here. The Rangers have largely been disappointing from a fantasy standpoint, and while I think they will eventually get things going, as is usually the case in terms of my approach with prolonged slumps, I’d rather be a little late to the party than the only one there, being disappointed over and over again. As such, even at attractive price points on a short slate – I wouldn’t be going nuts with exposure to either of the top two lines for the Rangers in this one…though I wouldn’t argue too much with anyone that wanted to take that plunge…I can’t argue the fact that they are in a good spot tonight.
As for the Devils, they haven’t played in a couple of weeks, so I have no problem taking a wait and see approach with them as well. It looks like we have a decent gauge as to their lines from practice of late, but be sure to check back before contests start to make sure there are no surprises. Hughes-Johansson-Bratt are an affordable stack along with Ty Smith on the back-end if you wanted to get some exposure to an intriguing line that should be low-owned tonight despite seeing heavy minutes.
Colorado @ Vegas (-110), Total: 5.5
I like the idea of getting heavy expousre to the MacKinnon line and to VGK1 tonight. Vegas’ top line has been one of my favourites all season long, and while I don’t think I’m exactly reinventing the wheel here by touting that, I continue to be surprised at their ownership levels most nights, checking in lower than I think they should be. The match-up with Colorado is a tough one, but I think goals go up on the board in this one tonight and I love what I’ve seen from the top line for Vegas. Unlike my approach to VGK1, I continue to like an under-weight or fade approach to Pietrangelo. Great real-life defenceman….often disappointing DFS option. Alright, now queue up the 25 DKP night….
As for Colorado, it’ll take a while for MacKinnon and company to round into form, but the trio of him, Rantanen and Saad is a great option who shouldn’t be popular given the tough match-up that they have against Vegas. As is the case anytime this stack isn’t likely to be chalk, I like the idea of going over-weight exposure to them, and tonight you should be able to do that at around ~20% (about neutral weight on MacKinnon – but over-weight his linemates).
Minnesota (-115) @ LA Kings, Total: 5.5
I like stacking against the Kings, however – I don’t like stacking teams that haven’t played in two weeks. So – where do we go? The answer is probably half way….and it’s hard to argue the spot for MIN1 (Eriksson-ek, Parise, Fiala). I wouldn’t go nuts with exposure here, but for 5-10%, assuming they are all getting the final stamp of approval to suit up tonight, I like the spot for them based on the match-up alone, even though they’ll probably be rusty. Outside of them and Dumba on the back-end, I don’t have any other interest here.
As for the Kings, this may be one of a number of times that you can count on one hand, but I like the spot for LAK1 tonight. Kopitar-Brown-Iafallo all play together both at EV and with the man advantage, and against a rusty Wild team, I like this spot for them a lot tonight. Kopitar and Brown are clearly a far cry from the primes of their careers, but Kopitar comes into this one with goals in three straight, and the match-up tonight against Minnesota who haven’t played in two weeks is about as good as it gets. You can sprinkle in Doughty on the back-end for a fourth piece here, or use him with two of the options up front for a few combos to roll through in MME formats.
Good luck in your contests tonight, and if you want to see some of my favourite one offs for tonight’s slate – make sure to check out the Cheat Sheet, which is focused more to that vs. this piece, which focuses on stacking (primarily with options up front at C/W)!