Best NHL DFS FantasyDraft, FanDuel and DraftKings Picks & Tips – 2/21/17

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


Eric Staal (12600/5400/6100) – Our breakdown today will start with Eric Staal, who is priced very attractively, at home and in a great matchup against the visiting Chicago Blackhawks. The Wild are one of my favorite targets, and when we get the perfect trifecta here with matchup/price/opponent, I will be sure to move my ownership percentages of them up. Staal makes a great cornerstone play, especially on FanDuel.

Mark Scheifele (13500/7600/6500) – This Winnipeg Jets/Toronto Maple Leafs game should be a high scoring affair that we can get quite a few plays from. Probably my favorite of all of them is Mark Scheifele, who is in the midst of a very strong season, and should be skating on the second line on the road, which is usually where we want to target the second unit. I think his upside here far exceeds his price, and he will be a very popular target tonight.

Brock Nelson (8500/4800/4300) – Nelson hadn’t been featured in one of our breakdowns all year until last year, but he finally made it in last week. Unfortunately, he didn’t pay dividends in that situation. I’m fine with going back to him in tournaments tonight against the Red Wings, especially at his price. He will have some games this year where he really makes it worth your time and tonight could be one of those situations.

Henrik Zetterberg (11100/6200/5400) – Let’s move to the other side of the Red Wing/Islanders game and go with Henrik Zetterberg, who is finally putting up good numbers. One of the non statistical measures I do look at in hockey is hot streaks, and Zetterberg is on one of the better heaters he’s been on in the last few years. I think he’s probably my favorite play thus far, and he makes an awesome cash game play.

Wings –

Jimmy Vesey (8400/4100/4200) – Our first contribution to the winger side of the night is going to be with Jimmy Vesey, now sitting on the top line in New York for the Rangers. This is a position that the Montreal Canadiens have really struggled with this year. His price is extremely attractive, and I think he could be worth a look in either format, though I will admit there is somewhat of a risk there.

Sebastian Aho (10400/5500/5000) – Aho is also a name that isn’t exactly familiar to this list, but he’ll be worth a look in tournaments tonight. He’s put up some big games this year, but they have not come with any level of consistency. The Penguins are still having trouble here and there, and with this game being played on the road, I could see the Hurricanes sneaking one or two in. I think Aho is a good bet to having a part in that.

Nikita Kucherov (14600/7400/7000) – Normally, we’d be sitting here talking about how great this is for Kucherov, but his output lately has just not been good. I still think he is worth a look in both formats, though, because this is an excellent matchup against the Edmonton Oilers. His upside is probably a bit higher than Henrik Zetterberg’s, but I just don’t think that his floor is as safe.

Connor Brown (8500/4600/4200) – Connor Brown isn’t a name that is going to be readily rolling off a ton of tongues tonight, but the fact is that this game is setting up to be a nice one, and he’s sitting very cheap on the top line. Toronto can score some goals, and Winnipeg can give them up, so I see this being a perfect storm to use a guy at this price and hope for the best.

Defensemen –

Nikita Zaitsev (9000/4100/4400) – If you thought we were going to stay away from the Maple Leafs/Jets game at this position, then you were sorely mistaken. I think this makes for a great spot to roll out Nikita Zaitsev. At his price, with the amount of time he is seeing on the ice and in a great matchup, he’s going to be one of the first people that make their way into my lineups.

Dustin Byfuglien (12600/6000/6200) – If price isn’t an issue, though, I’m far more likely to switch over to the other team in this game and roll with Byfuglien. I can already see that I’ll be running quite a few Schiefele/Byfuglien lineups tonight, and I think we’ll see Byfuglien make it close to the 20 point mark. I think this is a great spot to stack this game.

Mark Giordano (10200/5300/5000) – Giordano hasn’t been very stable at all, despite being that way for so much of the past few seasons with the Calgary Flames. I absolutely won’t be looking at him in cash games, because he is very volatile, but in tournaments, he has the type of ceiling that we should be willing to attack. The price is falling, so I think he’s a great option tonight.

Dion Phaneuf (9000/4800/4400) – Phaneuf has been very good in the past few weeks, and his price hasn’t really gone up at all. Erik Karlsson is basically a better option every single night, but he is priced significantly higher than Phaneuf. I am glad to take the discount, and he’s going to go in a lot of my lineups, regardless of the format.

Goalies –

Minnesota Goalie – Devan Dubnyk is just way too good, so much to the point that I don’t care who the opponent is. We know that the Blackhawks pose a difficult task, but I think it’s one that he should be able to take advantage of. That’s all I’m looking for. Also, he’s at home.

Los Angeles Goalie – I mentioned that Dubnyk was at home, because if it wasn’t for that fact, I would have considered using whoever is in the net for the Kings. Colorado is very bad, but I just don’t love using goalies on the road. I still think it’s worth a look in tournaments.

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