NHL DFS Primer | Monday, May 24th, 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!
Sunday saw a couple of series draw to a close – and another on the brink of having just that happen as the Jets beat the Oilers in OT. Monday gives us a 5 game slate, the deepest so far throughout the course of the playoffs – which will expand the player pool a little bit. Let’s have a look at each game and figure out some ways to approach building line-ups for tonight’s NHL DFS action on DraftKings for May 24th!
NY Islanders @ Pittsburgh (-140), Total: 5.5
The series is all squared up here as it heads back to Pittsburgh – and this one seems to have all the makings of one that will be tight throughout, quite possibly heading to seven games. With the last change, I like the spot again for PIT1/PIT PP1 in this one as they will be able to match them up, so that would be a change for me from game 4. Crosby and company will be among the most popular lines tonight – and you could bolt on (or replace one of the wingers with Malkin) if you are looking to put a twist on the traditional even strength stack. Letang is an elite high priced option on the back-end. Carter/McCann as a two man 3rd line stack is worth keeping in your player pool. While Carter won’t continue to produce at the rate that he has (12 goals in 15 games), in MME formats, I think it’s a great idea to get ~5% exposure here.
As for the Isles – nothing has really changed. NYI2 remains among my favourite low-cost lines, NYI3 (or at least Pageau/Palmieri) are among my favourite low cost duos, and I don’t particularly love the spot for Barzal and Eberle (nor the fact that they are playing with Leo Komorov). I’ve brought up NYI2 so many times that if you’ve been following this piece down the stretch, you’re probably sick of it – but I do continue to love Beuavillier (who could also be a key part of NYI PP1 stacks, which is a viable way to approach the Isles). On the back-end, Scott Mayfield is one of the best dollar for dollar options with a high floor from BS+SOG, Pulock is worth keeping in your player pool – and Noah Dobson is worth bolting on to NYI PP1 stacks.
Both netminders are in play here – though keep an eye on who gets the start for the Isles in this one (I suspect they will go back to Sorokin, who was outstanding setting aside 29 of 30 shots on Saturday).
Toronto (-140) @ Montreal, Total: 5.5
The Habs have three goals through the first two games as the series shifts back to Montreal, tied at 1. The Toronto PP looked outstanding in game 2, and the Habs just kept parading to the box as they seemingly couldn’t possess the puck in the second period, and the end result was TOR PP1 having a great night. TOR1/TOR PP1 will be among the highest owned stacks in this one – though I do think that Montreal will be more disciplined in this one. The Habs have to figure out how to slow down Matthews – he has sent 23 pucks on net through two games, an absurd stat. In MME formats, it’ll be tough to not have significant exposure to TOR on this slate, even with a fifth game sprinkled in. On the back-end, D Rasmus Sandin ($2800) lit the lamp with a 98 MPH clapper for his first playoff goal and has shown solid chemistry with the big guns for Toronto. He’s a great option, and Rielly has looked strong and is a quality mid-priced option. G Jack Campbell has looked rock solid so far and is a strong option if you like the Leafs to win this one.
For the Habs – I do think it’s only a matter of time before they start to score a little bit more. If you think they’ll be in tough, you could make a strong case to consider a fade here, however – and I know that many subscribe to the, ‘I’ll wait until they burn me once before considering stacking them’ camp. We’ll see if the Habs slide Cole Caufield into the line-up for this one to try and get some more firepower into the line-up, and I wouldn’t be shocked if they mix up their lines after looking pretty dreadful on Saturday night. All in all – I don’t particularly love any of their lines in this one personally – but I do like Chairot and Edmundson as low-cost options on the point.
Tampa Bay @ Florida (-105), Total: 6
This game will be a popular one tonight, which shouldn’t be too surprising given the fact that it checks in with a projected total of six and has been high scoring throughout the course of the series. Outside of game two, the other three games have seen goal totals of 8, 11 and 9 – so you can even make a case here to consider a game stack as that has been a great approach all series long.
For the Bolts, Kucherov’s lower body injury doesn’t look like it’s considered serious, and it looks like he will be in the line-up tonight for Tampa playing alongside Point and Palat – and they are among the best lines to get significant exposure to tonight. Kuch has been electric after sitting out the entire regular season, coming into this one fresh off of a four point night which gives him points in all four games this series (nine in total). The second line for Tampa is worth mixing in some exposure to as well. Stamkos has six points in four games, or you can opt to get significant exposure to the top PP unit here – which combine the best options from both lines out of the Bolts top six. On the back-end, Hedman is an elite high spend and Sergachev looks like he’ll suit up tonight as well and is a solid mid-priced option.
For the Panthers, most of the heavy lifting has been done by Huberdeau offensively. While Barkov has a point in each game, Huberdeau has been outstanding, coming into this one with seven points in the series. For the Panthers, I continue to like stacking with their top PP unit, which combines the best options spread across their top 9 (Huberdeau-Barkov-Bennett-Hornqvist, in that order). Keith Yandle was scratched last time out with Brandon Montour taking over quarterbacking the PP, and while he is worth having in your pool, Mackenzie Weeger is my favourite option on the point for Florida, though he has been a DFS disappointment so far in round 1.
Edmonton (-100) @ Winnipeg, Total: 5.5
The Jets shocked the hockey world, and the Oilers, storming back from a 4-1 defecit mid-way through the third period. This will be a tough turnaround for the Oilers, who will be playing for their season down three-zip in the series. Ehlers was outstanding last night, putting WPG2 on the map with his return to the line-up, and the spot for each of the top two lines for the Jets on Monday night is a good one. They are two of my favourite lines on the slate. Hellebuyck didn’t play in back to backs all season long – so while I think he’ll be between the pipes tonight (and if so, he’s an elite option in MME formats and in single entry if you can stomach the fact that you are using a goalie against the Oilers and it can blow up quickly). He has been outstanding, and even though he started Sunday night’s game pretty soft, he was outstanding in the second half of that game and a big reason they won. Edmonton could very well have put up 6-7 last night if he didn’t pick it up in the second half of the game.
As for the Oilers, it will really come down to what you think the field will do with them. They produced in game 3, and with their backs against the wall in Game 4 – they’ll be leaned on heavily in this one to try and keep their season alive. Winnipeg went to the Lowry line against them in OT with the last change, and I wouldn’t be shocked to see them continue that approach in game 4 as it was quite effective. I really think you could go either way here – with a fade, or with a significant over-weight position…and I think I’m leaning towards the fade, which is risky. You could just play it down the middle with ~20% exposure here (a bit higher on McDavid) – but I like the idea of pushing an edge with whatever side of the fade/over-weight end of the spectrum you fall on.
Minnesota @ Vegas (-180), Total: 5.5
The Golden Knights are sitting pretty, up 3-1 in the series, heading back home to try and punch their ticket into the second round. They have done a great job of keeping Minnesota’s offence in check so far through four games, and I really don’t like this spot for the Wild. I think you can opt to sprinkle in an option or two on the wing – but without a force down the middle, to me – it really limits the upside for even strength line stacks. I think you can make a strong case to consider fading them altogether tonight.
As for the Golden Knights, Max Pacioretty remains out – and I’d be quite surprised if he suited up tonight given Vegas’ comfortable lead in the series. Alex Tuch has gotten a chance for some better linemates, taking his spot with Stephenson and Stone and has filled in pretty well, lighting the lamp three times. I don’t expect this line to be too popular as they aren’t overly cheap – but they are definitely worth keeping in your player pool, and in fact, I actually like them a fair bit given the fact that I don’t think they’ll be too highly owned. VGK2 will be among the highest owned mid priced stacks yet again tonight. I think a strong case can be made for a game theory fade here on them – nothing new. They are a quality line, but have really had an underwhelming season yet continue to be popular. On the back-end, Theodore and Martinez are among my favourite options on the point, and I like Whitecloud as a near punt with upside. Theodore has been really quiet for his usual standards – but I do think it’s only a matter of time before he gets things going – and if Vegas goes deep this spring, I think he’ll be a big part of it.
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!