DFS NHL PICKS

Sadly, the NHL season is coming to a close so we’re here to present to you our last regular season edition of our DFS NHL picks.

Not to worry, we will still be providing fantasy picks throughout the playoffs. But as every team is in action, this is a big night.

Important note: Word came out of Pittsburgh earlier today that superstars Sidney Crosby and Kris Letang would not be dressing for their season finale, so be weary of any last minute scratches around the league.

As we’re all aware of professional sports contracts are laced with incentives. In other words, statistical plateaus that athletes must attain to cash in on big money bonuses.

To break it down, as major league sports season’s come to a close these plateaus often become the focus of individual players as they step into action. Wouldn’t you try your luck if a million dollars was the difference between you taking the shot (and scoring) or passing it off to a teammate? 30 goals on the season puts you into the upper-echelon of performers, whereas 29 goals gets you in the milder “20-goal scorer” category.

So as time is of the essence for these contracts, I’m aiming for players who will be extra motivated to reach these milestones.

If you doubt this theory and need proof, just look up how Jamie Benn won the NHL scoring title last season. Spoiler: He scored four points (a hat-trick), including the last one with 8.5 seconds left in the game (and season) to surpass John Tavares and Sidney Crosby to win the Art Ross trophy. Not to mention he did it without the other half of Dallas’ dynamic duo as Tyler Seguin sat out with an in-house suspension.

Finally, let’s take a look at my DFS NHL picks.

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If you can’t tell just by looking at it, this is pretty much a young stars team balanced out by the ageless wonder Jaromir Jagr, and Chicago’s 2015-16 dynamic duo of rookie Artemi Panarin and current NHL leading scorer Patrick Kane.

The strategy is to have hungry young guns with a lot to prove, plus a few guys on hot streaks to bring some stability.

Panarin sits at 28 goals on the season, needing two to hit the 30-goal plateau. One single point would be nice as well, as the 75-point mark would be awfully impressive for a rookie (albeit a 24-year-old rookie)

Winnipeg rookie Nik Ehlers is a nice value at $4800, and has 1 goal and 5 assists in his last 10 games while skating on the Jets’ top line with Blake Wheeler and breakout star Mark Scheifele.

The heavily scrutinized Alex Galchenyuk managed to turn a nearly lost season around just in time to be named the Montreal Canadiens player of the year. The electric American also sits at 28 goals, and you can bet his teammates (namely Max Pacioretty) will be doing everything they can to get him to 30 goals. A nice team dinner and a couple of bottles of wine is in the best interest for everyone, especially since the Habs have nothing else to play for.

19-year-old phenom Connor McDavid is arguably the best player in the NHL already. He leads the league (ahead of Jagr and Kane) with 2.71 points-per-60-minutes during 5-on-5 play. The former two come in at 2.61. While the Oilers were a disaster this year (again), the Canucks have been down right awful for the past month and are ripe for the picking. McDavid has at least one point in all but two of his previous 10 games (2 goals + 11 assists), including 3 against these very same Canucks just 48 hours ago. Did I mention he sits at 48 points (44 games) on the season? Two points in the season finale seems fitting for the young icon.

 

Posted in NHL

Fantasy Hockey

Montreal Canadiens Prospect Report

As the real NHL season winds down, so does the fantasy hockey season. So for all those without a ticket to the playoffs, all eyes are onto the off-season. Well, if you’re wondering who to keep and who may be expandable, who to draft and who to target, we got you covered!

Today we’ll start with the NHL’s worst team since December, the free-falling Montreal Canadiens who always seem to reach a new low. Injury after injury, loss after loss, new faces have been in and out of the lineup more often than at your local precinct.

Lucas Lessio was acquired earlier this season in a trade that sent Christian Thomas to the Arizona Coyotes. Neither prospect had yet to live up to their high potential, so a change of scenery was necessary in hopes of righting the ship.

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Lucas Lessio Fanpicks.com Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

Lessio scored his first goal as a Montreal Canadiens on March 22 when he netted the game-winner against the Ducks at the Bell Centre. Other than a few games as a healthy scratch due to the ever-turning Habs roster, Lessio has been a mainstay on the fourth line bringing his size, speed and energy to each shift. What Lessio brings in terms of work ethic and character is something the Canadiens were deeply lacking all season, and with this part of the season essentially being training camp for next year, Lessio is fighting for a permanent spot with the Habs. I personally think the fit is great and he should play the majority of the games next year for Montreal, albeit on the fourth line.

While there haven’t been many positives this season for the Habs, Sven Andrighetto might just be the exception. He’s quietly put together another solid year (13 points/37 games) for the Canadiens while again dominating the AHL (26 games/23 points).

He is out with an upper-body injury at the moment, but strung together a three-game span with four assists prior to exiting the lineup. Presumably sustained against the Senators from a crunching open-ice hit by Dion Phaneuf. At the time he was skating on the top line next to Alex Galchenyuk (the league’s leading scorer since Feb 24) and Max Pacioretty (playing his best hockey of the season).

His quickness and more importantly, his natural playmaking ability make him a valued asset in an organization sorely lacking such abilities. It looks like “Ghetto” has a spot amongst the Canadiens top 12 forwards next season, and very possibly the top six.

He is on the verge of full-time play, the Habs can only get better and he is not a household name yet. Andrighetto would be a major “value” target of mine this fantasy hockey off-season.

Posted in NHL

NHL DFS Results

A special edition of NHL DFS Results is brought to you instead of our usual pre-game lineup. We’re going post-game here as I had another winning ticket for my Saturday night picks. It wasn’t the best of performances, far from it. But it was in the money and that’s all that counts, right folks?

I present to you both images. The nice green line and little man, indicating that you’ve had a successful night, as well as the detailed overview of my roster.

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The only ones who failed me were my Canadian team representatives. I should’ve known Alex Galchenyuk would have an off-game, Charles Hudon played a strong game but you can’t say the same about the rest of the Canadiens.

Erik Karlsson had an easy game against the Leafs, his Senators even won 4-0. But the star defenseman failed to find the scoresheet. Very disappointing. At least he was a plus-2.

The rest of my team did great though, specifically my forward choices. With major playoff implications on the line the big guns delivered.

Joe Thornton had a goal and an assist, Oshie had a powerplay goal, the ageless wonder Jaromir Jagr had 2 assists. Jaden Schwartz came through with 2 big assists as the Blues narrowly edged the Stars 5-4 late in that one.

Shayne Gostisbehere scored a huge goal for the Flyers to tie the game at 4 in the third period, but Philadelphia also fell by a score of 5-4 to Jagr and the Florida Panthers. The kid is so clutch it’s ridiculous. Don’t look now, but the Flyers sit just 3 points out of a playoff spot. Escaping that one with 2 points would’ve went a long way.

Jonathan Quick didn’t exactly come through, but I’ve seen worse performances from a big-ticket goalie sink ships before and I survived. I’ll let it slide this time.

Posted in NHL

DFS NHL Lineup

Another edition of our Fanpicks.com DFS NHL Lineup is here. Our experts’ picks were in the money again last night, so we’re not going to give it away too easily. Sometimes we give you the picks and the easy money, but we’re going to make you work for this one. That is the fun of it after all! Let’s compare rosters.

  • My Lineup

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With a whopping $1300 leftover there’s still lots of room for flexibility. Every player chosen is on a hot streak of sorts, with multiple points over their last 10 games.  The one exception to the rule is LW Charles Hudon of the Montreal Canadiens. The star prospect will be skating in his third game for the injury-plagued Habs, on the second line next to speedsters Thomas Plekanec and Paul Byron. It’s a huge gamble but I’ve been scouting the kid for years and I like him more than the other options, even up to $4300.

The tough decisions were choosing Joe Thornton over Evgeny Kuznetsov and Connor McDavid. While the latter two are mega explosive and on nice runs of their own, Jumbo Joe has just been too consistent since the holiday season.

Alex Galchenyuk has been the leagues leading goal scorer since late February with 11 goals in his last 8 games. Yes, goals, not points. But I’m sure you’re well aware of that.

Jaden Schwartz and his Blues are facing the struggling Dallas Stars. Vlad Tarasenko is simply too pricey, so the steady Schwartz will have to do. He is a slick playmaker who makes things go on the powerplay and is never too far from Tarasenko.

TJ Oshie has been rolling for the Capitals lately. They’re on the west coast to face the San Jose Sharks tonight, so with no Ovechkin or Kuznetsov in this lineup, Oshie was easy pickins’.

The Flyers are red-hot, and Claude Giroux is the leader offensively but they have pretty widespread scoring. That made Shayne Gostisbehere an easy choice. Without any Philly forwards on the squad, the rookie had to be in my lineup.

Erik Karlsson has been colder than normal but with 70 points in 69 games this season, you can’t really go wrong with the star d-man, A matchup with the Leafs definitely works in his favor as well.

 

Posted in NHL

Evening NHL DFS Picks

Stadium Series Edition

Earlier we posted our afternoon NHL DFS Picks, and here we present our Evening NHL DFS Picks.

With a classic Habs vs Leafs game, and another edition of the #StadiumSeries, having just four games on the evening schedule ain’t so bad. We have a strong roster with a ton of money left, $1800 to be exact. Let’s see who I selected from a condensed set of options.

  • My roster

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Stadium Series – I figured based on 90% of previous outdoor games that this will be a low scoring affair as well. With that being said, I limited myself to just one player from each side.

In a game of such epic proportions, you expect the young players to be a little shell-shocked to start off, so I went with the veterans in the Stadium Series.

Jarome Iginla was my selection from the home-town Avalanche. The veteran sniper has been filling the net regularly for the past three weeks and if there is a goal to be had early-on, or really late Iggy will do it.

Pavel Datsyuk always stars under the lights, and skating in the Stadium Series is blinding. I personally cannot wait to watch the 2016 version of the greatest rivalry of my life-time. It’s always special when the Red Wings and Avalanche get together and tonight will be something really special. A real sight to see.

I think the Canadiens line of Alex Galchenyuk, Lars Eller and Sven Andrighetto will be have too much speed and skill for the talent ravaged Maple Leafs. But if I went with Galchenyuk and Andrighetto over Jarome Iginla and Max Pacioretty the amount of cap room left over would be ridiculous. I decided to try to max out the cap as much as I could while focusing on the favourites in each matchup.

Pacioretty plays with Plekanec and Gallagher on the Habs top line,  but the aforementioned trio displays more natural, high-paced chemistry. Pacioretty and Gallagher’s individual talent compared to the rest of the pool, and a date with the Leafs made them the choice.

Calgary’s Johnny Gaudreau has the puck on a string at the moment, and often finds more twine.

The Kings should dominate the Sabres, and I expect the horses to pull the carriage. Kopitar hasn’t missed a beat since comng off an injury and Doughty is just too solid at both ends of the rink.

Mike Condon was a great discount and since our big-ticket choice Jonathan Quick will be riding the pine we stuck it out with the Montreal netminder.

 

 

 

Posted in NHL

Daily Fantasy Hockey Picks

On this President’s Day edition of my daily fantasy hockey picks, I take another look at a potential winning strategy to help you win your daily fantasy hockey league and make some serious cash on FanPicks.

On a night where three big ticket goaltenders will be taking the night off (Luongo, Crawford, Rinne), finding great value in net is all you can do. By taking Mike Condon over the more talented Jacob Markstrom you save $1500, a nice sum you can use to bolster another spot in your lineup since neither are exactly Vezina candidates.

Let’s take a look at the rest of my lineup…

  • My Roster

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In this case, I’m going to take advantage of the extra cap room and select the league’s most expensive skater Tyler Seguin. Seguin suffered a scary skate-to-arm injury last game but should be fine tonight versus the same Predators he scored a pair against earlier this year.

Sidney Crosby was very tempting as my other Center, as there’s just something about Florida that brings out his competitive nature so take the gamble if you can afford it. I couldn’t due to other desires, such as playing Alex Galchenyuk, so I slotted in the streaky Habs forward behind Seguin (Galchneyuk is listed as a center on FanPicks but a LW elsewhere). “Chucky” netted a pair of one-time powerplay goals in a frustrating Friday night loss, so his strong play could continue against one of the NHL’s worst defenses.

Patrick Eaves has points in five straight, but his $5000 price tag puts him above other viable options such as birthday “boy” Jaromir Jagr at $4900. The now 44-year-old legend has a shooting percentage 5% higher than his career average, and a date with his former franchise on his big day is worth watching.

Montreal rookie Sven Andrighetto netted a pair on Friday night, and now leads the team in goals per 60 minutes played despite just joining the top-six last game. He now skates next to Max Pacioretty and David Desharnais to form a skilled scoring line and has a matchup with the aforementioned Coyotes weak D.

The LW spot was the hardest to fill today. Thomas Vanek was a healthy scratch recently for his all-too-common lackluster efforts, but has four points in his last three games for the struggling Wild since sliding back into the lineup. Nashville’s Filip Forsberg has four goals and two assists over his last four contests, a big sign that the 21-year-old is starting to heat up after a slow start.

PK Subban has 11 points during his eight game point streak, following six points in the previous six games.  He has been on fire since Christmas time and has easily been the Canadiens best player night after night.

Predators defenseman Roman Josi has five points in his last three games and has been a beast all season, but with a high priced veteran like Subban already on the roster, I needed to save a little money on my other defenseman. Maple Leaf Jake Gardiner has benefited from Dion Phaneuf’s departure by scoring two goals and two assists over his last three games, so we’ll roll with him.

Posted in NHL

Here’s another installment of my winning (hopefully) daily fantasy hockey lineup. This week we are going to take a look at one of the lesser-known ways to play daily fantasy sports. An old friend perhaps, the point-spread.

In a point-spread contest, athletes are ranked by a spread rather than an appointed salary. There may or may not be a point cap, similar to a salary cap. The top players will be ranked below 0, and the “cheapest” players will be your positives. IE: Sidney Crosby is the NHL’s most valuable skater at -13.8, while injured rookie Lucas Lessio is a +7.7. The spreads are based off their FPPG production.

  • My Lineup

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I went with the small spread mentality. Don’t start too deep in the hole right out of the gate, and maximize your values. A well-balanced philosophy combined with boom-or-bust picks was my best chance to wrangle this one in.

So obviously my team is Montreal Canadiens dependent. Goaltender Ben Scrivens has played his best hockey of late, riding a three-game winning streak into Buffalo so I had to take him at -0.5 (a great discount for goaltenders). The line of Alex GalchenyukTomas Plekanec-Brendan Gallagher is one of the hottest in the NHL, so I went with Galchenyuk. The least productive of the bunch, which is why I’m banking on a break-out.

With that line so hot, captain Max Pacioretty is due for a return to the spot light. He started getting some chances toward the end of their previous game, and a young team like the Sabres may be just what the doctor ordered. Pacioretty was too expensive for this owner and his aforementioned philosophy, so we went with his setup man, David Desharnais. While we know he won’t contribute in multi-categories, if he can get 2 assists, a couple of shots on goal and maybe even one across the goal line, it will have been worth the gamble.

My joker, perhaps the X-factor…Jaden Schwartz,.The uber-talented young Blues forward is returning from a fractured ankle he suffered in October…49 games ago. He will find his place next to his two former linemates Jori Lehtera and Vlad Tarasenko in a line that could produce instant fireworks.

Marian Gaborik returns to MSG with his rolling LA Kings, so I’ll take the chance that the veteran plays a solid game against the team that traded him because he wasn’t effective enough for them.

The only big ticket item we have is Penguins Defenseman Kris Letang. His -9.8 price tag, or shall I say spread, didn’t scare us away.  A matchup with the lowly Hurricanes could be a tasty treat for the red-hot blueliner. His FPPG totals are just too ridiculous to even consider not playing him in with this matchup.

Alexei Emelin has been looking like a stud on his own blueline over the last few contests and his muli-category ability makes him very appealing. Not to mention Jeff Petry is out with an injury so Emelin‘s playing time will go up.

Checkout our daily blog for our previews and picks!

Posted in NHL