DraftKings NHL Lineup Advice: Thursday (10/11)
A full, 12-game slate is on tap this evening, with a lot to break down. We are now one full week into the new 2018-19 season and trends are starting to form. For some teams, we have seen up to four games played. For others, their season is just starting. Four teams have played just one game thus far.
There will be plenty of offense tonight as the NHL transitions into a more fast-paced sport. Let’s take a deeper dive into the games scheduled and find some of the best DFS options this evening.
Steven Stamkos (TB): $6,400 vs. VAN
On DraftKings, Steven Stamkos is grossly mispriced. The superstar center is arguably a top-five scorer in the league and is the 12th most expensive player at his position. He is close to $2,000 too cheap on any night, let alone a matchup against the Vancouver Canucks, who are allowing 4.67 goals against through three games. Tampa Bay is a heavy, -275 favorite in a game which will see goals scored. Stamkos is one of the games most feared snipers and will look to record multiple points after a long five-day break.
Dylan Larkin (DET): $5,300 vs. TOR
More of a GPP option, but viable in cash games, is Red Wings center, Dylan Larkin. Larkin is one of the only offensive bright spots coming out of Detroit in what will be another rebuilding season. The top line center is averaging close to 20 minutes a night, where he also logs time on the top power-play unit. His elite speed generates plenty of offense in which he has recorded one goal, two assists, and 11 shots through three games. Once again, the matchup against the Maple Leafs will prove to showcase fantasy production. Although Toronto is the better team to target for offense, they have no defense to speak of. This was a concern coming into the season and has been proven true from allowing over four goals against per game.
Nikita Kucherov (TB): $7,500 vs. VAN
The Lightning winger was an Art Ross candidate for the majority of the season in 2017-18. His skill is unquestioned as one of the best offensive players in the NHL. Playing alongside Stamkos, Kucherov is one-half of the most dangerous duo in the league. Tampa Bay is playing just their second game of the season, but we fully expect them to dominate the Eastern Conference like they did a year ago.
Kasperi Kapanen (TOR): $4,700 @ DET
The Toronto Maple Leafs have a very scary offense. They have multiple superstars who can score seemingly at will. One of the beneficiaries is Kasperi Kapanen. Starting the season on the fourth line, Kapanen has since moved up to the Leafs first/second line (more of a 1A and 1B line situation) with Auston Matthews. Toronto’s top player is setting the league on fire with seven goals and three assists already, through just four games. Since moving to his line, Kapanen has recorded four points and nine shots on goal in two games. For salary relief, look to Kapanen who has massive upside at this price.
Taylor Hall (NJ): $6,800 vs. WAS
A cash game staple in the NHL is the former Hart Trophy winner, Taylor Hall. The same thing happened last year, at the beginning of the season. DraftKings priced Hall below $7,000 because he was not seen as a top offensive player in the NHL. In reality, there are few better. His speed and skill combination lead to plenty of offensive chances on any given night. He takes a lot of shots both on even strength and on the man-advantage. Currently, Hall is priced as the 10th most expensive winger, $1,000 less than Alex Ovechkin. Hall does not need to score to pay off his price with the number of shots he generates, making him a top-tier option every night the Devils play.
Reilly Smith (VGK): $4,400 @ PIT
The Vegas Golden Knights are having a playoff hangover. They have a 1-3 record to start the season and are struggling to score. After an incredible 2017-18, Vegas has a lot to prove. They did lose a couple of key pieces but have most of their core. Reilly Smith is one who needs to find his offensive game, soon. Coming off a career best, 60 points in 67 games, Smith will look to get things going on the road in Pittsburgh. The Penguins have been atrocious defensively so far this season and will look to be apart of another offensive shootout. In their first two games, both at home, Pittsburgh has allowed 12 goals against. What is more concerning is the fact starting goaltender Matt Murray will be sidelined with a concussion. Casey DeSmith is in-line to get the start in net. The 27-year old has just 14 games in the NHL and will have a tough test in his first start of the season. This should be a back-and-forth game with plenty of goals. Reilly Smith is too cheap to pass on.
Morgan Rielly (TOR): $6,200 @ DET
Most of the Toronto Maple Leafs are “match-up proof.” Their offense has been as good as advertised and one major contributor has been Morgan Rielly. Tied with Auston Matthews for the most points in the NHL, Rielly has recorded two goals and eight assists through the first four games. The Leafs power-play is lethal and Morgan Rielly is the quarterback setting up each goal. Detroit likes to slow the pace down at home, but it won’t matter. Toronto will be a viable stacking option all season long, barring any serious injury.
Victor Hedman (TB): $5,900 vs. VAN
The 2018 Norris Trophy winner is back in action, along with his Lightning teammates after a long five-day break. In a smaller market, most people forget how good Hedman is. Along with DraftKings. In his last two seasons, Hedman has scored 135 points in 156 games. Rarely do we witness defensemen who score close to a point per game. Last year, Hedman was consistently priced as the highest d-man on the board. Tonight, we get him at a nice discount. He, along with Stamkos are by far the “must-play” options this evening. Hedman will average close to 25 minutes a night, skate on one of the best power-play units in the NHL and fire a ton of shots on net. Do not think twice and take advantage of the early-season mispricing.
Devan Dubnyk (MIN): $7,700 vs. CHI
Whenever Devan Dubnyk is starting, at home, he needs to be considered for DFS purposes. The Wild netminder has turned his career around since coming to Minnesota and is now consistently a Vezina Trophy candidate each year. The Blackhawks offense will scare a lot of people off of Dubnyk. Jonathan Toews is off to a very hot start, scoring five goals in his first three. However, he has not recorded more than 30 goals in a season since the 2010-11 season. Do not be too worried. The Wild are a very defensive team and on home ice, they can dictate the line matchups. They will be shutting down the Blackhawks in a game which should be low scoring. If anything, the Wild should find offensive success against a Corey Crawford-less Chicago team.