NHL DFS Primer | Saturday, May 22nd, 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!
Saturday gives us a three game slate, starting at 3pm with the Pens/Islanders in what should be an exciting day of action in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Let’s have a look at each of the games on the slate and look at some ways to approach stacking in contests on DraftKings for May 22nd!
Pittsburgh @ NY Islanders (-115), Total: 5.5
The Isles and Pens resume their series tonight, and I was hoping we’d see another game where the total checked in at 5, granted – I figured it was a longshot at this point in the series. Both teams have been putting goals on the board and I expect another tightly contested game tonight. We’re into game 4 in the series – and the main update here in terms of personnel is that all signs are trending towards Malkin suiting up tonight when many thought he would be a GTD. That should bump down McCann to PP2, and should move Jeff Carter down to the third line tonight.
For the Pens, the top line has been relatively quiet in this series – but on a short 3 game slate, they are one of the best options on the board – even in a tough match-up against a quality defensive club. Letang is a great bolt on for them who skates on the top PP unit. Don’t sleep on PIT3 – Jeff Carter has (now not so) quietly put up 12 goals in his last 14 games, and while I wouldn’t expect low ownership levels on them on a 3 game slate – I do think they have the potential to fly under the radar in terms of ownership levels with the likes of NYI2 and VGK2 – and for them, I think you can either opt for a PIT PP2 stack, or a two man PIT3 stack that includes Carter and McCann.
As for the Isles, I continue to like the under-weight approach on NYI1, an over-weight approach on NYI2 and NYI3. I think that the balance the Isles have down their top 9 is quite strong, and the only drawback to NYI2 and NYI3 to me is the fact that I expect them to be among the most popular options for low priced stacks tonight. Beauvillier is a guy that I have been touting pretty hard for the past 2 months – so at the risk of beating a dead horse here, I still like him (and his line) and even though I think they’ll be pretty highly owned, they remain an elite low-mid priced stack.
Montreal @ Toronto (-170), Total: 5.5
The game on Thursday night was overshadowed by the scare around John Tavares – and while he is out indefinitely – the fact that he was fairly quickly released from hospital was fantastic news with how scary that injury looked. The Leafs, not shockingly, were pretty dull for most of the night with their captain knocked out, and tonight it will be interesting to see how the game plays out. With Tavares out, I really only like TOR1/TOR PP1 in this one. Because of the injury, the Leafs stacked their PP unit, having Nylander join in with TOR1 late in the game (initially Joe Thornton was getting this spot after the injury) – and while Rasmus Sandin played the point with this unit, I wouldn’t be shocked to see the Leafs go back to Reilly on PP1. I think that Nylander is worth keeping in your player pool – but for me, the focus for stacking with TOR should be around that first line with Reilly and Sandin sprinkled in on the back-end (assuming Sandin dresses). You can make an argument for a game theory fade here. It’s certainly risky – but in play. Montreal is arguably the top defensive team in the north division – and they did a fantastic job of stifling TOR1 in the first game. Carey Price also played fantastic and is capable of stealing a couple of games in a series. He’s a must-have in MME formats for significant ownership levels in my opinion.
As for the Habs, they don’t have too much offensive firepower – but on a short slate against a team prone to defensive lapses, they are worth keeping in your player pool. You can opt for modest ownership levels in MME formats to each of the top 3 lines, with my favourite being the Suzuki-Toffoli-Armia line. On the back-end, Petry, Edmundson and Chairot are all attractive one-offs at their respective price points. Weber sent 6 pucks on net in game 1 and blocked two shots – and if you think that this will continue – he is another option to sprinkle in on the back-end, though he is playing with the second PP unit (Staal-Anderson-Armia-Tatar).
Vegas (-100) @ Minnesota, Total: 5.5
The Golden Knights stormed back on Thursday night, scoring five unanswered to come back and win game 3. I like them more than the Wild, though with their track record and the short slate, I expect them to be popular. VGK2 finally had a productive night, and they’ll likely be the highest owned mid-priced stack in this one (and for good reason). Keep an eye on the status of Max Pacioretty, who has been out since May 1st. He remains DTD and while I wouldn’t expect him to suit up – if he does, VGK1 becomes a very interesting pivot off of TOR1 as the high priced chalk tonight. If he sits, VGK1 remains an affordable option to go stacking with and I like the spot for them tonight. Theodore and Martinez are elite high priced options on the back-end and I don’t mind Whitecloud as a punt with upside. Fleury is worth significant exposure between the pipes as well.
For the Wild, I continue to really only have interest in Kaprizov, Fiala, Dumba and Spurgeon. Not the best for stacking, and it’s hard to imagine a Wild stack being large field GPP relevant. Of the six teams on the slate tonight, they are the one that I think you can make the strongest case to fade, or even eliminate from your player pool. Of course, if you wanted to play the betting line, the line is pretty neutral here, and a game theory case could be made to go over-weight on them – which shouldn’t take up too many of your lines due to the fact that I expect their ownership levels to be low.
This article focuses mainly on stacking – if you want to see my favourite one-off plays, please look out for the NHL Daily Cheat Sheet that will be out a little later on this afternoon!