Late DFS draft picks
Thursday NHL Rundown
Here is the NHL rundown. We’ve got picks from Thursday Late Fantasy Hockey matchups to get you ready for your cash drafts. Play at FanPicks now!
Vancouver Canucks (29-34-7) vs St. Louis Blues (39-28-4)
Vancouver’s captain Henrik Sedin (club-best 30 assists) joins twin brother Daniel with one goal and three assists in his past four games overall and the Swedes each have two points versus St. Louis this season. Blues winger Vladimir Tarasenko (team-leading 34 goals, 64 points) has eight points in as many games overall and had two goals and an assist in the first two meetings versus Vancouver.
Calgary Flames (41-28-2) vs Nashville Predators (36-25-7)
Flames winger Johnny Gaudreau collected four assists last month versus Nashville. This has sparked a 14-game stretch in which he’s amassed 18 points. Gaudreau has lit up the Predators in his career with three goals and nine assists in eight games. Nashville’s Craig Smith has not been able to score since the All-Star break, but he set up a pair of tallies in Monday’s victory versus Arizona.
Philadelphia Flyers (33-31-4) vs Minnesota Wild (44-22-4)
Philadelphia center Brayden Schenn has eight points (one goal, seven assists) in eight career meetings with Minnesota and has five (three goals, two assists) in his last five games overall. It won’t be easy for him and his team as they face one of the best goalies this season, Devan Dubnyk. Dubnyk hopes to have put a painful stretch in his rear-view mirror after recording his career-high 37th victory on Tuesday, matching Niklas Backstrom’s franchise record for wins in a season.
Dallas Stars (29-33-9) vs Chicago Blackhawks (47-20-5)
Curtis McKenzie, who scored the Stars lone goal on Monday, is enjoying a career season by setting personal bests in goals (five), assists (eight), points (13) and games played (48). The 26-year-old British Columbia native has recorded points in two of his three contests at the United Center and in three of his six career games versus the Blackhawks. Chicago captain Jonathan Toews, who is riding a five-game point streak (three goals, three assists), and winger Patrick Kane have each scored three goals and set up two others versus Dallas this season.
Edmonton Oilers (39-25-4) vs Colorado Avalanche (20-49-2)
The NHL top scorer, Connor McDavid, is riding a five-game point streak during which he has collected three goals and seven assists for the Oilers. Colorado’s Matt Duchene has gone three games without a point, keeping him tied with Valeri Kamensky for 10th place on the franchise list with 414.
Winnipeg Jets (33-33-6) vs Los Angeles Kings (34-31-3)
Winnipeg’s Blake Wheeler (one goal, two assists), Mathieu Perreault (one goal, one assist) and Mark Scheifele (one goal, two assists) combined for eight points in the win over Philadelphia on Tuesday. Los Angeles’ defense and goaltending have been solid most of the season, giving up just 2.46 goals per game (fifth) through Tuesday, but the Kings has surrendered seven goals in their past two contests.
Thursday Fantasy Hockey Preview
The NHL rundown examines Thursday Fantasy Hockey matchups (Enter contest) to get you ready for your cash drafts.
Canadiens vs Flyers
The Montreal Canadiens’ top line of captain Max Pacioretty, Alexander Radulov and Phillip Danault are showing signs of coming together as a group while the Philadelphia Flyers quickly came apart at the seams in their first game back from the NHL All-Star break. Pacioretty, who leads the team with 24 goals, recorded his second hat trick of the season and sixth of his career during the Habs last game.
Senators vs Lightning
The Ottawa Senators hope to rebound from an uncharacteristically sloppy performance. They’ll battle their Atlantic Division rivals Tampa Bay Lightning. The Sens saw their six-game point streak come to an end with a 6-5 loss at Florida on Tuesday despite 41 shots on goal in the first contest after the All-Star break.
Rangers vs Sabres
The All-Star Game gave NHL teams a chance to get recharged but the New York Rangers and Buffalo Sabres each appeared to extend their respective breaks by about two hours too long. Both the Rangers and Sabres will look to avoid getting off to disastrous starts when the clubs square off for the third time this season.
Oilers vs Predators
The Edmonton Oilers and Nashville Predators cruised into the All-Star break before stumbling out of the blocks in their first trip to the ice. The Western Conference upstarts look to regain their footing at the other’s expense.
Jets vs Stars
The Dallas Stars look to exact revenge for their worst loss of the season but more importantly pick up two key points in the Western Conference standings. Dallas lost 8-2 their last meeting against the Jets on November 8. Both teams have 52 points and are four points behind third-place Nashville in the Central Division. They are also among six teams bunched together fighting for the two wild card positions.
Blackhawks vs Coyotes
The Chicago Blackhawks aren’t getting much bang for their buck from their vaunted second line, with Artem Anisimov struggling to find the words in much the same manner as he’s struggled to find the net in the last 11 games. Anisimov, Artem Panarin and reigning Hart Trophy winner Patrick Kane look to rediscover their scoring touch as the Blackhawks bid to snap a three-game skid on versus the Arizona Coyotes.
Maple Leafs vs Blues
Less than nine months after advancing to the Western Conference finals last season, the St. Louis Blues pulled a shocker by dismissing veteran coach Ken Hitchcock on Wednesday. Mike Yeo, designated the coach-in-waiting for 2017-18, had his timetable pushed up and will be behind the bench for their confrontation with the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Sharks vs Canucks
While Patrick Marleau continues his quest for career goal No. 500, the Pacific-leading San Jose Sharks are aiming to remain successful on the road . Marleau has closed in on the milestone by netting six tallies over his last four contests and is one shy of tying Lanny McDonald and becoming the 45th player in NHL history to reach the plateau.
NHL Daily Rundown
Thursday Fantasy Hockey Previews
FanPicks.com has an NHL daily rundown to get you ready for live fantasy hockey contests.
Penguins vs Bruins
The Pittsburgh Penguins look to pick up the pieces on Thursday after a lackluster performance in their last outing. Pittsburgh’s high-octane offense was stuck in neutral in Tuesday’s 3-0 setback to St. Louis. It ended the team’s streak of scoring at least four goals during its four-game winning streak, which included a 5-1 rout of Boston on Sunday.
Capitals vs Devils
The Washington Capitals have surged to the top of the NHL standings but will look to rebound from their first regulation defeat in 14 games. Washington suffered a 3-0 loss at Ottawa on Tuesday.
Canadiens vs Islanders
The New York Islanders have reversed course on the direction their season was headed by recording at least a point in five straight games (4-0-1), highlighted by a 3-0-1 mark under the watch of interim coach Doug Weight. The Montreal Canadiens have outscored the Islanders by a 28-14 margin en route to winning the last seven encounters.
Maple Leafs vs Flyers
The Toronto Maple Leafs are showing no signs of cooling off as the All-Star break approaches, recording at least one point in 13 of their last 15 games (11-2-2). Toronto looks to remain ahead of schedule and knock off the Philadelphia Flyers.
Kings vs Hurricanes
The Los Angeles Kings snapped a four-game losing skid in their last outing. Carolina has been outscored by a disastrous 20-5 margin during their four-games losing streak, but it improved to 3-0-1 in its last four meetings with Los Angeles after posting a 3-1 victory on December 8.
Flames vs Senators
The All-Star break can’t come soon enough for the stumbling Calgary Flames, who will try to stop a four-game slide when they visit the Ottawa Senators. Calgary has surrendered 20 goals during its four-game skid and has been manhandled by Toronto and Montreal on the first two legs of its three-game road trip.
Lightning vs Panthers
The Tampa Bay Lightning will attempt to win back-to-back games for only the second time since Thanksgiving. They followed up one of their worst losses of the season Saturday in Arizona with one of their most inspiring triumphs Tuesday, when they rallied for four third-period goals to beat Chicago 5-2.
Blue Jackets vs Predators
The Columbus Blue Jackets have answered the franchise-best 16-game winning streak by surrendering 33 goals to record losses in six of their last 11 games. The Blue Jackets look to tighten their defense and resume their pursuit of the top spot in the Metropolitan Division versus Nashville Predators.
Blues vs Wild
The Minnesota Wild look to wrap up a scintillating 7 1/2-week stretch when they host the St. Louis Blues in their final game before the All-Star break. Minnesota holds a two-point lead atop the Central Division and owns the best record in the Western Conference in the wake of a spectacular 20-3-1 mark since December 4.
Jets vs Blackhawks
The Chicago Blackhawks are among the most successful teams in the NHL this season, but 20 percent of their regulation losses came against the struggling Winnipeg Jets. Winnipeg has allowed only two goals in three victories over Chicago, and the Jets can use a victory entering the All-Star break after back-to-back home defeats.
Sabres vs Stars
The Buffalo Sabres’ newfound knack for winning games has them within striking distance of their first Stanley Cup playoff berth since 2010-11. They’ve won three straight, all in overtime. Buffalo erased a two-goal deficit and Jack Eichel scored twice, including the one in the extra session in Tuesday’s 5-4 victory in Nashville.
Canucks vs Coyotes
The Arizona Coyotes look to remain perfect on their five-game homestand and seek their first three-game winning streak of the season when they battle their Pacific Division-rival Vancouver Canucks.
Oilers vs Sharks
The streaking San Jose Sharks will be sorry to see the All-Star break come as they aim for the seventh consecutive victory. San Jose has posted four one-goal victories during the run, including a 4-3 triumph at Winnipeg on Tuesday in which Patrick Marleau scored his fifth goal in two games with 4:33 remaining in the third period to snap a tie.
Chicago Blackhawks vs St Louis Blues
The Chicago Blackhawks’ six-game winning streak has been built on a foundation of a potent 1-2 punch involving reigning Hart Trophy winner Patrick Kane and captain Jonathan Toews. The strong goaltending of Corey Crawford is not to be gone unnoticed either. The Blackhawks look to continue their good fortune on all fronts and avenge a season-opening loss to the St Louis Blues. The Central Division rivals meet at Scottrade Center on Wednesday (Enter Contest).
ABOUT THE BLACKHAWKS (9-3-1)
The Hawks’ top pair (Kane & Toews) is arguably the best within the past half decade and there is no sign of slowing down from them. Kane collected three goals and five assists during the winning streak. Toews answered his traditional slow start out of the blocks to record of eight points. Veteran Marian Hossa set up a goal before scoring in overtime in a 4-3 win over Dallas on Sunday to increase his point total to seven (five goals, two assists) in his last six games and 1,100 in his decorated career. New linemate Artem Anisimov also tallied to extend his career-high point streak to 11 games, but he was held off the scoresheet in Chicago’s 5-2 setback against St. Louis on October 12.
Crawford yielded three goals in that contest to fall to 14-5-5 lifetime versus the St Louis Blues but has stopped 164-of-169 shots while posting two shutouts during the Blackhawks’ current winning streak. Rookie Tyler Motte is expected to miss three weeks with a lower-body injury.
ABOUT THE BLUES (7-4-2)
Goalie Jake Allen permitted nine goals in a two-game stretch before stopping 22-of-23 shots in a 5-1 victory over visiting Colorado on Sunday. The 26-year-old New Brunswick native has played significantly better at home than on the road. He posted a 3-0-1 record with a 0.98 goals-against average and .959 save percentage at Scottrade Center as opposed to 2-3-1 mark with a 3.42 GAA and .864 save percentage away from the Gateway City. Right winger Vladimir Tarasenko recorded two goals and an assist in the first meeting with the Blackhawks this season. Tarasenko has collected 16 points (10 goals, six assists) in as many career encounters with the division rivals. Mired in a five-game point drought, 2012 top overall pick Nail Yakupov is expected to be a healthy scratch for the third straight game. It’s a decision that hasn’t pleased the Russian too much.
An upper-body injury to Joel Edmundson will send fellow defenseman Petteri Lindbohm into the lineup. He’s has been recalled from the Chicago Wolves of the American Hockey League just two day’s ago. The Blues scored three power-play goals in the first meeting with the Blackhawks but are just 1-for-21 in their last six games.