FanDuel NHL DFS Strategy Advice: Tuesday (4/13)
Slightly more than a month remains until the final games are played to cap off a unique 2020-21 regular season. We enter Week 14 with the Vancouver Canucks still, unfortunately, battling a COVID-19 outbreak amongst their players and staff and wish them and their families a safe and speedy recovery. Vancouver was supposed to return to its facilities on Sunday, but the team continues to quarantine and comply with protocol to expedite their return for a potential postseason push.
Tuesday’s six-game slate allows fantasy managers to focus on undervalued second and third-line skaters to construct winning lineups within a relatively smaller slate. Two Central Division matchups provide a lot of opportunities, like Nashville and Tampa Bay, as well as the Florida Panthers against the Dallas Stars. Both contests feature aggressive offenses and exceptional goaltending play, creating the exact type of environment for a skater to pour in a couple of points in your lineup. Other lopsided matchups also present good value at higher and lower salaries alike when siding with the team that has superior talent, as is the case when the Washington Capitals host the Philadelphia Flyers.
Here are a few value skaters to consider rostering in order to cash your lineups on Tuesday.
Nicklas Backstrom (WSH): $6,600 vs. PHI
The 33-year old Backstrom centers the second-line for Washington, earning additional minutes on their top power-play unit while averaging 17:30 time on ice across his last five starts. Backstrom has three points (three assists) with six shots on goal across his last three starts and will have ample opportunity to chip in an assist or goal against Flyers’ G Carter Hart on Tuesday night. Hart has only won one out of every three starts in net this season (24 games played) with a poor 3.79 GAA and .872 save percentage. Hart’s poor performance in net presents a plus-matchup for Backstrom and the Capitals, who are coming off an 8-1 massacre of the Boston Bruins this past Sunday. Backstrom leads the Capitals in points (42) through 42 games played and will look to end his nine-game goal drought by lighting up the lamp against Hart and the Flyers in Philadelphia.
Colin Blackwell (NYR): $3,800 @ NJ
The Rangers are only four points behind the Boston Bruins for the fourth and final playoff seed in the East Division. This makes it imperative for New York to start racking up some wins down the stretch to bypass Boston, as their goal differential (+21) indicates superior offensive firepower in comparison to the Bruins (+5). RW Colin Blackwell skates on the Rangers’ second-line opposite of Artemi Panarin, with Ryan Strome centering the unit to make it a top-five second-line in the league. Blackwell had four points (goal, three assists) across three consecutive games before being held without a shot or point against the Islanders on Sunday and is presented a great opportunity to generate points against projected New Jersey G Mack Blackwood on Tuesday. Blackwood has allowed nine goals across his last two starts, earning a dismal 4.71 GAA and .816 save percentage. Blackwell is not a heavy-volume shooter, but he operates well near the goal and benefits from skating alongside Strome and Panarin, who are two of the best second-line skaters in the league. Blackwell is a salary saver at just $3,800, and I suggest pairing him up with either Strome or Panarin to increase your point total simultaneously within Tuesday lineups.
Justin Schultz (WSH): $4,300 vs. PHI
Schultz has four points across his last two games (goal, three assists) and earns additional minutes on the Capitals’ second power-play unit. The 30-year old Canadian defensemen is a cheap addition to your lineups, especially when looking at the opposing goaltending play of Flyers’ G Carter Hart. Totaling 37 blocks and 58 shots on goal, Schultz has lit the lamp only three times this season but has 19 assists thanks to great vision and crisp passing in the offensive zone. With Carter Hart allowing 3.79 GAA and a .872 save percentage across 24 starts this season, Schultz will have ample opportunity to resume his point streak on the road Tuesday night.
Chris Driedger (FLA): $8,000 @ DAL
Chris Driedger has been a menace in the net for Florida, boasting an elite .930 save percentage across 18 starts for the Panthers this season. With a 2.02 GAA and two shutouts across his last six starts, fantasy managers should be rostering Driedger as the foundation to their lineups as he draws a surging Dallas Stars team on Tuesday night. Expect the Panthers to try and get out to a fast start over the Stars to shake a three-game losing streak. Driedger has only allowed more than two goals once in his last six starts and faces a Dallas team who scores 2.73 goals per game which is markedly lower than the 2.93 league average. Fire up Driedger in all lineups before rostering other players for Tuesday’s slate.