FanDuel NHL Lineup Advice: Saturday (12/8)
Another week another star player back into the fold. This week’s case is the rich getting richer with the Toronto Maple Leafs. The previous week gave them back their superstar Auston Matthews. Now this week they get back William Nylander. An embarrassment of riches comes to mind. The revamped Leafs will be one of the marquee teams playing in a slate of games on Saturday with many of the top scorers playing.
Some matchups to watch for are the Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Ottawa Senators. In this game you have the offensive juggernaut of Pittsburgh going up against a surprisingly equal in offensive output Ottawa. On the Pittsburgh side, you have the usual suspects in Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Phil Kessel, etc. On the Ottawa side, you have Mark Stone and Thomas Chabot that both have 30+ points. The next matchup to keep your eye on is Tampa Bay vs. Colorado. These two teams are both explosive offensively and loaded with weapons. On the Colorado side, you have Nathan MacKinnon, Mikko Rantanen, Gabriel Landeskog, etc and on the Tampa Bay side, you have superstars like Nikita Kucherov, Steven Stamkos, and Brayden Point. The final matchup to keep your eye on is the classic rivalry of Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Boston Bruins. In this game, you have an absolutely loaded Maple Leafs squad that has John Tavares, Auston Matthews, Mitchell Marner, etc. Not to be outdone you have weapons on the Bruins side with David Pastrnak, Brad Marchand, and recently returning from injured reserve defensemen Charlie McAvoy and Tory Krug. In these matchups, there should be many options to bolster your FanDuel squad for Saturday’s contest.
In addition to these matchups, here are some specific recommendations for your FanDuel lineup:
Auston Matthews (TOR): $8,600 vs. BOS
It’s almost unfair to the opponents of the Maple Leafs to have to try to contain Auston Matthews. Matthews came back from the injured reserve a little over a week ago and looks no worse for the wear. Matthews has scored 5 goals and 3 assists in the 4 games since returning from the injured reserve. Matthews has a ridiculous 24.1 FPPG for a reasonable price tag of $8,600. Matthews does have a tough matchup against Boston that has the third least amount of goals allowed but Matthews should still find a way to get on the scoresheet.
Jack Eichel (BUF): $7,700 vs. PHI
“Everybody likes Ike”, Eichel that is,…..at least in Buffalo. Jack Eichel is having a breakout season this year. Eichel has performed well so far in his career with totals of 56, 57, and 64 points in his first 3 seasons. So far this season Eichel has 7 goals and 27 assists through 29 games this season for over a point-per-game. Eichel has benefitted from the addition of Sam Reinhart and Jeff Skinner to his top line. Eichel has a robust 18.1 FPPG for a price of $7,700 in FanDuel. Eichel has an ideal matchup against a Flyers team that has had suspect goaltending this year.
Sam Reinhart (BUF): $5,700 vs. PHI
Continuing on a Buffalo theme in Saturday’s contest. Reinhart was recently promoted to the top line with Jack Eichel and Jeff Skinner. Reinhart had been having a decent season up to his promotion but since then he has been on fire. Reinhart has 6 goals and 4 assists in his last 6 games to bring his season totals to 8 goals and 16 assists through 29 games. Reinhart has a 12.3 FPPG for a bargain basement price of $5,700. Reinhart draws a beatable matchup against the Flyers. Bet on the Sabres top line taking advantage of the Flyers porous defense.
Reilly Smith (VGK): $5,000 vs LAK
Smith is reaping the benefits of playing on the Golden Knights top line. Smith has 5 goals and 15 assists through 30 games. Smith has 1 goal and 6 assists in his last 6 games. Smith is on the top even strength and power play lines for the Golden Knights and stands a good chance to equal his career high of 60 points achieved last season. Smith has a good matchup against a beleaguered Kings team with an out of rhythm goalie Jonathan Quick.
Travis Konecny (PHI): $5,700 vs BUF
Konecny has been on a tear over the past 7 seven games with 5 goals and 5 assists in that span. Konecny has benefitted from his duty on the top even strength unit with Claude Giroux and Sean Couturier. Konecny has 8 goals and 10 assists through 26 games this season. With his current line assignment, Konecny should be able to maintain his current scoring pace and surpass last season’s career high of 47 points. Konecny gets a decent matchup against Buffalo on Saturday and will be facing backup Linus Ullmark due to an injury to starter Carter Hutton.
Elias Lindholm (CGY): $6,400 vs. NSH
Lindholm is yet another example of how a change of environment can make all the difference in a players career. Lindholm had been scuffling with the Carolina Hurricanes since being their first round pick in 2013. Lindholm has drawn a most favorable line assignment with the Flames with Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan on the Flames top even-strength line. Lindholm has been on fire of late with 3 goals and 5 assists in his last 5 games. Lindholm has 15 goals and 17 assists in 29 games for over a point-per-game pace on the season. At his current scoring rate, Lindholm should almost exceed his career high by the All-Star break. In addition, Lindholm has a solid 16.1 FPPG in Fanduel so far this season. Lindholm and his teammates will look to get a similar result against the Predators as the Canucks did earlier this week.
Charlie McAvoy (BOS): $4,500 vs. TOR
Charlie Mac is back! At long last the Bruins have their potent defensemen duo of Torey Krug and Charlie McAvoy healthy at the same time this season. After close to two months on the injured reserve, Charlie McAvoy returned to the Bruins lineup this week. McAvoy has 1 goal and 5 assists in 8 games this season. The Bruins former first-round pick in the 2016 draft will look to resume the performance he exhibited in his rookie season, last year, with 32 points. McAvoy has 1.3 FPPG through 8 games this season. McAvoy should get opportunities on the power play and against a Maple Leafs team known for their offense and not their defense. For a low price of $4,500, McAvoy is well worth the gamble.
Scott Mayfield (NYI): $3,800 vs DET
Mayfield has to be one of the biggest surprises for the Islanders this season. A defenseman not known for his scoring that now has 3 goals and 10 assists through 25 games. Mayfield has exceeded the Islanders other defenseman known for their scoring such as Ryan Pulock and Nick Leddy. Mayfield has a solid 9.7 FPPG for a dirt cheap price of $3,800 in FanDuel. Mayfield won’t lead your team in points but will help with the budget and against a struggling Red Wings team he should put up some points towards your cause.
Linus Ullmark (BUF): $7,600 vs PHI
Opportunity has come knocking for Linus Ullmark. The young Swede could have an opportunity to get multiple starts for the Sabres with starter Carter Hutton injured. While the duration of time missed is unsure even a few extra starts could allow Ullmark an opportunity to gain more future starts. Ullmark has performed well so far this year for the Sabres. Ullmarks is 5-0-3 with a 2.71 GAA and a .921 save percentage in 9 games played for the Sabres. Ullmark has 21.7 FPPG in FanDuel this season. Ullmark has a winnable matchup against the Flyers on Saturday afternoon. For a low price of $7,600, Ullmark should allow you cap space in other positions without a drop off in production at goalie.