DraftKings NHL Lineup Advice: Thursday (3/28)
Can you feel the excitement in the air? That is the buzz of the NHL playoffs drawing nearer with each passing day. There is so much at stake for so many clubs right now, what more could a passionate hockey fan ask for? Tonight features teams such as the Montreal Canadiens visiting the Columbus Blue Jackets in a possible make or break battle. Then there are the Chicago Blackhawks and Edmonton Oilers playing in their respective games desperately searching for points to stay alive in the Western Conference playoff hunt. Finally, the Carolina Hurricanes look to end their 10-year playoff drought with a critical game tonight against the defending Stanley Cup Champion Washington Capitals. This evening’s pool of players features some valuable fantasy firepower so let’s examine some of the prospects available for managers to consider.
Aleksander Barkov (FLA): $7,700 @ OTW
Barkov is winding down what has been the best season of his six-year career in the NHL so far. He continues to impress fantasy managers by consistently providing a plethora of points on a consistent basis. In Barkov’s last 14 games played, he has produced seven goals, 14 assists, and a plus-five rating. That is an average of a point and a half per game during this stretch which is absolutely phenomenal. The Panthers will also be going north of the border this evening as they visit the league-worst Ottawa Senators. Ottawa has given up the most goals per game by any defense this season (3.46) so it is highly likely Barkov will capitalize in this scenario. Finally, the Senators also sit within the bottom-10 on the penalty kill (79.3%), and Barkov is on a lethal power-play unit that boasts a 27.4% success rate that is only second to Tampa Bay.
Tyler Seguin (DAL): $7,300 @ EDM
Seguin has been heating up this past month with four goals, 11 assists, and a plus-six rating since March 1. The Stars are becoming more and more dangerous as the playoffs inch closer, and Seguin is a big contributor to that. Dallas will continue their North-Western road trip tonight in Edmonton as they are currently in the top wild-card spot with 86 points. Edmonton is essentially a road apple for Seguin as they have allowed the fifth-most goals per game to offenses this season (3.12). Seguin and company should take full advantage of this situation if they want to sew things up and clinch a playoff berth.
Jonathan Huberdeau (FLA): $7,000 @ OTW
Florida’s top line has been producing points at a premium lately with 54 points combined through 14 games played amongst Huberdeau, Dadonov, and Barkov. Huberdeau has really stepped up this season, and during this span, he’s scored seven goals, along with 12 assists and a plus-two rating. With an extremely delectable match-up awaiting in Ottawa this evening, it is hard not to feel compelled choosing one of Florida’s top offensive linemen.
Dustin Brown (LAK): $5,200 @ VAN
It has been a very disappointing season for the Kings, as they own the lowest point total in the Western Conference currently (64 points). Brown has been averaging over a point per game since the first of March which is saying something considering how Los Angeles is tied with Anaheim for scoring the lowest number of goals this season (182). With nothing to lose, and being relegated to playing the role of spoiler for the remainder of the season, Brown and company will look to seize every opportunity they can get. Los Angeles will be squaring off against a shaky Vancouver defense tonight who have surrendered 2.99 goals per game this season. It is a gamble, but Brown might be a good dark horse forward candidate to consider tonight.
Others to Consider: Evgenii Dadonov $6,200
Brandon Montour (BUF): $4,500 vs. DET
While Montour’s plus/minus rating has not been very good in his last 13 games played, he will be going up against the Detroit Red Wings who have scored the seventh-fewest goals this season (203). He’s also managed to display flashes of offensive production during this 13-game span producing two goals and five assists. Finally, Detroit’s defense is very porous and they are the fifth-worst on the penalty kill this season (77.7%). Even though Montour will be on Buffalo’s second power-play unit tonight, it is still encouraging that the possibility of some offensive opportunities could trickle down to him and his mates during the man advantage in this contest.
Dmitry Kulikov (WPG): $2,500 vs. NYI
While his offensive production has not been very exciting for a defensemen’s standards lately (two assists in 13 games played), he has possessed a plus-12 rating which dates back to the beginning of this month. He’s also averaging 18:17 of ice time and will be taking on the New York Islanders who are just outside the bottom-five in terms of goals scored per game (2.70).
Connor Hellebuyck (WPG): $8,100 vs. NYI
In his last nine starts, Hellebuyck has gone 5-3-0 with a 0.927 save percentage and a 2.44 goals against average. Winnipeg is still trying to secure first place in the Central division as they are only two points in front of their rivals the Nashville Predators. Hellebuyck has been playing better as of late, and with a low-scoring offense like the New York Islanders coming to town, the scales are definitely weighing in his favor. Look for another strong start from the fourth-year goaltender.
Sergei Bobrovsky (CBJ): $7,600 vs. MTL
Bobrovsky has been sensational recently with three shutouts, a 0.935 save percentage, and a 1.86 goals against average. The veteran Russian net-minder has really gotten it together lately and is the major reason why Columbus still has a legitimate chance of qualifying for the post-season this year. Tonight is most likely going to be one of the biggest match-ups of the year for Columbus as they host the Montreal Canadiens who are just two points ahead of them in the standings for the final wild-card spot in the East. The Blue Jackets could sure use another top-notch performance from Bobrovsky tonight in an intense, playoff-like atmosphere in Nationwide Arena.
Others to Consider: Carey Price $7,900