It has been an exciting start to the new hockey season and we have finally reached the first Saturday night slate. There are 11 games on the main slate so let’ snot waste any more time and jump in and take a look at some of the top plays at each position. Then make sure to get a copy of my DFS NHL cheatsheet where I highlight all my favorite plays and top stacks for GPP formats.
Top Goalie Target
Frederik Andersen (DK - $8,400 FD - $8,400)
I am going right back to the Leafs net-minder tonight after his impressive opening night performance. He gave up the first goal but settled in after that making a total of 34 saves on 36 shots and recorded the win in an overtime victory over the Habs. He gets another plus matchup tonight as the Leafs are -240 favorites at home against the Senators. His best value is on FanDuel where he comes at a discount from the other top goalies but he is most definitely in play on both sites in all formats.
Also Consider: Andrei Vasilevskiy(TB)
John Tavares(DK - $7,800 FD - $8,200)/Auston Matthews(DK - $7,600 FD - $7,900)
Take your pick between the two Leafs superstars centers tonight in a terrific matchup against the Senators. Both players averaged over three shots and over a point per game a year ago and both scored in the Leafs opener and combined for eight shots on goal. Pick one of them to roll out in cash games and pair them together in GPP formats to get exposure to teh elite top powerplay unit.
Brayden Points(DK - $5,200 FD - $6,500)
If you are looking to go wit a more balanced approach, especially in cash games, don’t overlook Brayden Point. He took on a bigger role a year ago and didn’t disappoint with 66 points and 12 game-winning goals. He also averaged over 2.5 shots on goal per game with a 14.1 iCF/60 while getting just under 20 minutes of ice-time per game. The Bolts open the season at home against a Panthers tam that allowed over three goals per game on the road a year ago so get as much exposure to this high-flying offense as possible.
Also Consider: Adam Henrique(ANH) in GPP formats
Jake Guentzel(DK - $7,000 FD - $6,900)
Guentzel arrived on the scene in Pittsburgh late in the 2016-17 season and was a big contributor when the Pens won the Cup. He got off to a somewhat of slow start a year ago, in his first full season, but finished strong post All Star break with 23 points in 31 games. There was no slow start this season as the Pens were involved in a shootout with the Caps and Guentzel chipped in with two goals but what stood out the most to me was the five shots on goal. If that volume continues, he is more than worth the cost in cash games and always an option in GPP formats skating alongside Sidney Crosby.
Jimmy Vesey(DK - $3,900 FD - $3,500)
To fit some of the elite players in your lineups tonight you will need some value. When hunting for this value I tend to look for players playing on the top two lines, getting powerplay minutes, and some shot volume as well. Vesey provides all three as he skates on the second line and powerplay unit for the Rangers and while he didn’t record a point in the opener, he did record four shots on goal. Tonight, he and the Rangers get a much better matchup against a Sabres team that ranked 29th in goals against last season. Fire up Vesey in all formats.
Also Consider: Wayne Simmonds(PHI)
Kevin Shattenkirk(DK - $5,700 FD - $5,000)
As you are going to learn about me as the season goes on I love my value defensemen, especially in cash games. Tonight, my top value is Kevin Shattenkirk and while he is listed on the Rangers second unit he is their top offensive D-man and also skates on the top powerplay unit. He didn’t record a point in the opener against the Predators but he still exceeded value with seven shots on goal and four blocks. While I don’t expect that kind of floor on a nightly basis, I see the offense getting going as soon as tonight in a great matchup against the Sabres.
Erik Gustafsson(DK - $3,500 FD - $3,800)
I also love punting the position, especially early in the season before prices even out on some of the players getting more opportunities. Gustafsson is that player tonight as he will look to play a full season for the Hawks after going back and forth between the NHL and AHL the last two years. He had a solid start to the season recording an assist with a nice balance of shots(3) and blocks(3). He is skating on the third unit but is also getting time on the second powerplay unit adding to his value. At these prices, he is in play in all formats.
Also Consider: Patrik Nemeth(COL)