Best NHL DFS FantasyDraft, FanDuel and DraftKings Picks & Tips – 2/18/17

Welcome to another edition of ResearchFantasy’s NHL Breakdown. These picks are what I consider to be the best play of the day, relative to their price. One of the most important things we must consider in daily fantasy is how many points a player gets per dollar. It helps us identify value plays to pair with studs that we know will produce in order to maximize our potential points in lineups. I also try to identify plays that can be used in either cash games or tournaments. Typically, when I build my cash games, I am looking for players that have the best floor combined with good upside. If you have any questions, comments or suggestions, please let us know!

Prices listed are FantasyDraft/FanDuel/DraftKings

Centers:

Mikael Backlund (11100/5300/5400) – Let’s start today off with a nice value play in a great matchup, as the Calgary Flames travel to Vancouver to take on the troubled Canucks. This is really an excellent situation for a player having themselves a great year. He is safe and playable in both formats, and while he doesn’t have the highest upside on the slate, he is still someone who should be relatively safe to play.

Leon Draisaitl (12500/6800/6000) – Draisaitl has been a tremendous story this year, having 51 points on 58 games. The matchup is there on paper against a Blackhawks team that doesn’t have the defensive identity like it did in years past. I’ve been very impressed with Leon’s ability to find openings that shouldn’t be there, and he as well has been able to find his teammates just as much. I think he’s a safe option for both formats as well.

Henrik Sedin (8800/5000/4400) – Let’s move on now to a player who hasn’t exactly been the most reliable this year. Sedin hasn’t been bad, but I think he’s taken a step back from what we’ve seen in previous years. I don’t know if I’m really looking his way in tournaments, because I don’t know where the upside is, but I think he’s a pretty safe option in a good matchup against the Flames who aren’t a tough defensive team.

Kyle Turris (11000/5800/5300) – I try to always give a disclaimer when I am suggesting players I use a lot, and Turris is one of those guys. He’s been a little more productive than Sedin on the year, but I think there is some volatility as well. Unlike Sedin, though, he’s the type of option that does carry some pretty significant upside, playing for an Ottawa team that can score. This is a good spot to roll him out against the Maple Leafs, even on the road, so he’ll make a bunch of my tournament lineups.

Wings –

Tanner Pearson (11700/5500/5600) –When the Kings are playing at home, they are a team that I do like to get some exposure to. While Pearson won’t be on the top line, he’s still going to see plenty of time on the ice, and he is coming off two really big games. The opponent, the Florida Panthers, aren’t a tough team on the defensive side of the puck, so I could certainly see Pearson putting up a nice game.

Nino Niederreiter (11400/5700/5500) – The Predators find themselves in some high scoring games from time to time, and I think tonight could be one of those situations. The Wild are a team that can score some goals, and most everyone tends to be underpriced. I’ll gladly take a look at Nino tonight, as I think he could very well end up on the score sheet tonight, and it’s possible that it is more than one.

Richard Panik (8200/4200/4100) – Richard Panik was one of the hottest players to start off the season – and that’s when it basically all stopped. Two out of his last three games, though, have been pretty strong, including a monster outing the last time out. The Oilers still have a ways to go to become a better defensive team, and I think this could end up being a pretty high scoring game, that Panik may be able to do well in. He’s a tournament option only.

Jonathan Drouin (11100/5500/5400) – Drouin is another one of those players who seems to make it into a lot of my lineups and breakdowns. He’s had to take on more of an offensive role with Steven Stamkos, and he’s done reasonably well. The matchup is excellent against the Stars, who have been a defensive liability for years, so it never hurts to go after some exposure to them here.

 

Defensemen –

Jake Muzzin (9400/4700/4600) – The Kings’ defensemen have a great matchup against the Florida Panthers. The issue here is that most of the defensemen haven’t been very offensively active as of late. Muzzin has been the most consistent of the bunch, and also more affordable, so he’ll get the rub here. I don’t think he is a big upside play, so I’d restrict how I use him in tournaments, but I think he should be fine for cash games.

Victor Hedman (11900/6300/5800) – The Stars have been poor against the position as long as I have been playing NHL DFS. Hedman is one of the best offensive blue liners in the game, and he really isn’t priced as high as some of the others, so I think that makes him an excellent option tonight. I think this could be a high scoring game, so it should be worth picking up a few Lightning tonight.

Dion Phaneuf (8700/4800/4300) – Erik Karlsson is probably the top overall play at the position tonight, but he carries a pretty extreme cost. Phaneuf has been playing very well as of late, and comes in at quite the cost savings to his teammate. I don’t think it would be a bad strategy to even use both against the Maple Leafs, who have been really bad at defending everything again this year,

John Klingberg (10100/5500/4900) – Klingberg is another guy who manages to make this list quite often, but is not a very consistent player at all, so there is an immense amount of risk here for a guy who isn’t exactly cheap. The Lightning can give up some big games in general, and to the position, so there is a chance Klingberg could put up a big game, but it does come at a risk. I’d focus on using him in tournaments only.

Goalies –

Minnesota Goalie – This is a tough slate for goalies, as there aren’t but a few situations that stand out to me. Devan Dubnyk has been the most consistent of the bunch this year, so I am likely to look toward Minnesota tonight at the goalie position, for one main reason: he’s at home.

San Jose Goalie – If this game were played in San Jose, there is a good chance I would be writing up their goalie. However, it isn’t. I have been extremely uneasy about starting goalies outside of their home environment, mostly with good success, so I’ll only be using them in tournaments.

Thanks for reading! Don’t ever hesitate to reach out in the comments, follow us on Twitter @researchandwin or email us at host@researchfantasy.com!