The Blue Jackets are coming off two straight one-goal losses. While this team often does find it difficult to shut the door and walk out of the rink with a win most nights, they have been paying off for us in the goal department. Columbus has scored 11 times in their last three games and put up four goals in a recent meeting with the Leafs just two weeks ago. Toronto has been brutal defensively of late, allowing 5.25 goals per game over their last four starts. Given the way these two teams have been trending, just taking the simple over on a decent total for the Blue Jackets today seems logical.
The Panthers are on the road today and face off against the Sabres, who allow 34.2 shots per game—the third most per game in the league. The deep roster of the Panthers means we often get productive top-nine forwards going overlooked in the props department and today Reinhart feels like that guy. He’s averaged 3.3 shots per game over his last 10 games and landed three or more shots on net in four of his last five starts. He’s also played over 17 minutes in five straight games. With the matchup against Buffalo and solid odds, Reinhart’s total looks worth going over on.
Columbus Blue Jackets vs. Toronto Maple Leafs
Boone Jenner ($5,900) — Patrik Laine ($6,000) — Zach Werenski ($6,200)
The Blue Jackets’ offense has been a great target of late for daily fantasy purposes, especially their top duo of Patrik Laine and Boone Jenner. Laine heads into this game with Toronto still red-hot and with eight goals in his last 10 games. He’s looked like a different player since returning from injury and is averaging 15.9 DKFP over his last 10 starts as well, which makes him an excellent value at just $6K flat.
Laine himself should be a player you build around whenever he’s on the slate at this price, but his center is nearly as strong a value in DFS. Boone Jenner has benefited from his winger’s resurgence and is now averaging over a point-per-game over his last 10 starts as well. It’s hard to do much better than these two for correlation purposes in daily fantasy hockey contests as they’ve essentially been paired for the majority of their ice time—on the power-play and even strength—for over a month now.
You could go a couple of different ways to finish off the Columbus stack but paying up for Zach Werenski’s upside on the blueline seems like the most optimal for GPPs. Werenski has averaged 14.3 DKFP in his last 10 games as well and will correlate well with the Blue Jackets’ top-duo given his role on the PP1, and the fact he tends to play big minutes with the Jackets’ top-six. If you want to attack a Leafs team whose goaltenders have allowed five or more goals in three of the Leafs’ last four games, then paying up for Columbus’ top three skill players is the way to go tonight—and will still leave you plenty of salary in reserve.
Superstar to Target
Auston Matthews, Toronto Maple Leafs at Columbus Blue Jackets ($9,200)
We have plenty of big offenses on the slate with Florida, Calgary and Edmonton. Auston Matthews sticks out though as the one big name we really want exposure to given the matchup with Columbus today. The Blue Jackets rank last by a nearly one-shot margin in shots allowed per game this season and also have now given up the most quality scoring chances.
Columbus’ offense may keep them in games but from a fantasy standpoint, nobody on Columbus is going to stop Auston Matthews from getting his chances today. Matthews grabbed an insane 11 shots on net (and three points) against Columbus when these two teams met a couple of weeks ago and will certainly feel the need to replicate that performance again for the flailing Leafs—who have lost to Buffalo and Vancouver in their last two outings. Matthews is essentially carrying this team through a rough patch right now and he’ll feel the need to do that again today to break the two-game slump. Build around the Leafs’ big center and grab value from the other great spots on the slate today.
Value on Offense
Taylor Hall, Boston Bruins vs. Los Angeles Kings ($4,300)
The Bruins’ offense has been hard to stop of late as the team rolls in having scored 20 times over their last 10 games. While they’ve often been carried by a stout first-line, lately it’s been a balanced attack that’s helped them win and a second-line duo of Taylor Hall and David Pastrnak ($6,400) that’s carried the offensive load. Pastrnak is ridiculously underpriced today and pairing him with Hall would give you an excellent value duo to stack with another top line. Hall’s shot aggression has gone up since playing with Pastrnak and he’s averaged a point per game and 3.2 shots per game over his last 10 starts.
Sam Reinhart, Florida Panthers at Buffalo Sabres ($4,900)
The Bruins’ offense is a good one to target today, but if you do want to grab a piece of the Panthers—who have a 4.5 implied goal total—then don’t forget about Sam Reinhart ($4,900) either, who I mentioned above. His shots on goal props are underpriced but so is his daily fantasy hockey salary on DraftKings. Reinhart’s averaged 15.3 DKFP over his last 10 games and makes for a great pay-down option on his own.
Spencer Knight, Florida Panthers at Buffalo Sabres ($8,100)
The Panthers will be starting rookie Spencer Knight in net today, who makes for an interesting roster in daily fantasy. Knight has been a bit of disappointment this season as many expected him to grab the number one position away from Sergei Bobrovsky. There’s still enough season left for that to happen though and Knight was decent in his AHL stretch, posting a .917 in 10 games with Charlotte.
Going with Knight today brings a little risk but ultimately it’s the Sabres we’re talking about, a team that ranks seventh-worst in goals scored per game this season. Florida is also a hefty -330 on the Moneyline over on DraftKings Sportsbook and the other four games have little attractive options in net for daily fantasy hockey lineups with multiple backups on the board. Knight’s in a good place to excel today.
Value on Defense
Matt Grzelcyk, Boston Bruins vs. Los Angeles Kings ($4,000)
There isn’t a whole ton to get excited about in the value department. Matt Grzelcyk is a player who seems better to gravitate towards when he’s under $4,000, but with limited options, this price doesn’t seem all that bad today. Grzelyck remains a part of the Bruins’ power-play rotation on the back-end, even if he cedes most of the PP1 work to Charlie McAvoy. He’s been slow with the offensive production over his last 10 games but remains a player who carries multiple-point upside.
The Kings were trounced 7-0 by Boston when these teams played last week and L.A. sits with the sixth-worst penalty-kill in the league at the moment. You can likely find players with slightly better blocked shot + shots on goal metrics, but Gryzelyk’s pure offensive upside is hard to match at this price. He’s a solid pay-down target today.
Power Play Defensemen
Noah Dobson, New York Islanders vs. Colorado Avalanche ($5,700)
If you want a cheaper play than Zach Werenski (mentioned above) or just want another high-end stud to pair alongside him today, then I don’t mind looking to the sub-$6K price on Noah Dobson. Despite being a part of an anemic offense with the Islanders, Dobson has turned into a consistent fantasy performer and comes into this game averaging 0.9 real-life points over his last 10 starts. The increase in offensive output is noteworthy as Dobson also has solid peripheral stats to justify his price tag and has averaged 4.0 blocked shots + shots on goal over his last 10 games as well.
Dobson has landed four or more shots on net in four of his last six starts and his increased aggressiveness has led to more goals in the short term as well. A date with the Avalanche isn’t the worst thing for a power-play specialist either as Colorado continues to rank below average in penalty-kill efficiency. Dobson’s a great upper-tier value to target on a slate with numerous big centers attached.
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