FanDuel NHL DFS Strategy Advice: Tuesday (4/20)
Week 15 in the NHL is set to get underway on Tuesday with an eight-game slate. Several teams at the top of their division will face teams scraping and clawing their way to secure the final playoff spots. Vancouver has managed to overcome their COVID-19 outbreak, which is great news, except now they will have to play all of the games they postponed in a condensed amount of time. Meanwhile, a third Colorado Avalanche player tested positive for COVID-19 this past weekend, and the league has since decided to postpone their matchup.
Teams such as Florida, Pittsburgh, and Boston all have favorable matchups against teams that have been or are on the brink of postseason elimination, so second and third-line skaters have a shot at returning value in your Tuesday lineups. Let’s look at a few skaters I really like based on their recent performances and their opponents!
John Tavares (TOR): $6,700 at VAN
Toronto sits atop the North Division with the help of their 30-year old second-line center John Tavares, who has totaled six points (goal, five assists) across the team’s last three games. Earning additional minutes on the Maple Leafs’ top power-play unit, Tavares also has 12 shots during this same three-game span while averaging 20:36 time on ice across his last four starts. Toronto plays Vancouver on Tuesday night, and it’ll be interesting to see if a team impacted by COVID-19 but afforded a month off will be fresh or rusty against a dominant Toronto team.
With Thatcher Demko expected to start in between the pipes Tuesday night, Tavares should be able to extend his point streak without much difficulty. Demko allowed four goals in each of his last two starts against Winnipeg, and he will have to adjust to in-game speed quickly to counter the skilled first and second-line skaters for Toronto. Although salaried a bit higher than the average second-line skater, Tavares should be a lock in your Tuesday lineups.
Bryan Rust (PIT): $5,800 vs. NJ
I like this play based purely on the Penguins’ favorable home matchup against the New Jersey Devils. New Jersey’s projected goaltender, Mackenzie Blackwood, has been struggling recently. He gave up nine goals to Pittsburgh across their last two contests earlier in the month. With a poor 3.10 GAA on the season, there are a lot of Pittsburgh skaters to target when constructing your lineups.
Bryan Rust averages roughly 20 minutes of action per game this season and has been playing well despite earning just one point (goal) across his last three starts. Rust has totaled 10 shots on goal and two blocks in this same three-game stretch but has proven he is capable of lighting up the lamp, benefiting from the elite play of Sidney Crosby and Jake Guentzel on Pittsburgh’s talented first-line unit. With 34 points (17 goals, 17 assists) in 45 games for Pittsburgh this season, Rust gets the perfect matchup to secure a multi-goal or multi-point outing against Blackwood and the Devils, making him a must-add for your Tuesday lineups.
Jacob Trouba (NYR): $4,400 at NYI
The Rangers remain four points behind Boston in the East Division and will face an Islanders’ team sitting in second within the division due to a +22 goal differential. While Rangers’ defenseman Adam Fox certainly stands out, his salary is fairly steep, and second-line defenseman Jacob Trouba gets just as much opportunity in the offensive zone at a reduced salary. Trouba has netted one goal in his last three starts, but he has peppered the net with 10 shots while forcing seven blocked shots across this same span. He draws Islanders’ goalie Semyon Varlamov, who gave up three goals on 35 shots against the Rangers back on April 9th. Trouba also earned an assist and five blocked shots in that same outing, which would be a great performance based on his low salary for this slate.
Tristan Jarry (PIT): $8,100 vs. NJ
The 25-year old netminder for Pittsburgh should dominate between the pipes during Tuesday’s contest against the New Jersey Devils. In his last start against the Devils, Jarry finished with a 0.93 save percentage and secured a win despite allowing two goals. While he certainly had a slow start to the season, the Penguins’ goaltender has consistently improved throughout the year, and he’ll face a New Jersey team that ranks in the bottom-five for scoring per game (2.48), way below the league average (2.92). Facing a Devils team that lacks firepower throughout their roster (they have also failed to score in consecutive games during this past week), Jarry is positioned to be very successful in the net on Tuesday night. Roster him with confidence.