Daily Fantasy Hockey Playoff Preview: 04/16/18

Updated: April 16, 2018 at 5:37 pm by Brock Seguin

Each day of the NHL Playoffs, Dylan and Brock will be collaborating on a full preview of that night’s playoff action. Dylan will break down each game from a Daily Fantasy Hockey perspective, giving you some of his favourite targets. Brock will provide his Daily Fantasy Notebook after morning skates, including Projected Lineups, Injury Updates, Goalie Rankings and DFS Value Plays. Enjoy playoff hockey and the best time of the year!

By: Dylan Berthiaume

Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Boston Bruins

The first line of the Bruins has been the driving force behind Boston’s 2-0 series lead. Through the first two games Brad Marchand, David Pastrnak, and Patrice Bergeron have combined for five goals and 15 assists while posting a SCF% north of 70% at 5v5. With the last change at his disposal for games 1 and 2, Bruce Cassidy was able to hard match Boston 1 against the Auston Matthews line while still managing to find them a considerable amount of ice time against the Leafs’ fourth line. Thanks to Nazem Kadri’s three-game suspension, Cassidy has a lot less to worry about on the road now too. Kadri has been Mike Babcock’s answer to Boston 1 at home all season long, and now without him in the lineup Babcock has opted to promote Tomas Plekanec to the role of second line centre. At this point in Plekanec’s career he is obviously is quite the downgrade from Kadri in terms of being a shutdown centre, and he struggled to handle the firepower of Boston’s first line when matched against them in the first two games. Thanks to the absence of Kadri, Boston 1 remains as strong of a stacking option on the road for games 3 and 4 as they were at home.

On the flip side of the matchup, it’s finally time to consider a Toronto 1 stack. After a pair of dreadful performances in the first two games from the Maple Leafs’ top line, save for an outstanding individual effort from Zach Hyman in game 1, Matthews and William Nylander will no longer have to deal with the likes of Bergeron and Marchand at 5v5. It’s unclear whether Babcock will look to use them in a specific matchup or just run them out there every time Bergeron comes off the ice, but logic suggests he’ll try to avoid matching them against Boston 3 as well. David Backes, Danton Heinen, and Riley Nash, who is expected to return from injury tonight, gave up just 20 scoring chances per 60 in the regular season and posted a 56.40 CF% at 5v5 together. Those aren’t quite Boston 1 numbers but it’s certainly not an ideal matchup for your top line, either. I would expect Toronto 1 to see the majority of their ice time against the second and fourth lines of the Bruins, a pretty favourable matchup that’s not reflected by their recent drop in price (currently just $15,900 for the full stack on DraftKings).

New Jersey Devils vs. Tampa Bay Lightning

After dominating the first two games of the series, not much should change for the Lightning as the teams head to New Jersey for games 3 and 4. Tampa Bay 1 should continue to endure a tough matchup against a Devils’ second line that managed to hold Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov to just a single 5v5 goal in games 1 and 2. New Jersey 2 posted strong defensive metrics at 5v5 all season long, so it makes sense that the Lightning’s dynamic duo has had to rely on the powerplay to produce thus far. Interestingly enough, it was Tampa’s second line that carried them to back-to-back wins, as Tyler Johnson, Ondrej Palat, and Brayden Point combined for five goals and six assists. Despite their success Tampa Bay 2 becomes slightly less reliable tonight as John Hynes has seemingly tried to balance his lineup to better combat the depth of the Lightning, sliding the defensively-reliable Miles Wood down into the bottom-six.

Taylor Hall has made for a strong one-off play this entire series, but his line finally makes for a viable stacking target tonight as they should see some more favourable matchups on home ice. Again, with the depth of the Lightning there isn’t really a weak spot to attack in their lineup, but I nevertheless expect Hynes to get Hall and company out against the Lightning’s bottom-six as much as possible.

Colorado Avalanche vs. Nashville Predators

For whatever reason Colorado 1, and Nathan Mackinnon in particular, have been an entirely different beast at home this season. They averaged 39 scoring chances per 60 on home ice this year, and Mackinnon put up an astonishing 67 points in 39 home games, which is more than anyone else on the Avs not named Mikko Rantanen put up over the full season. It would be foolish to ignore these splits even against best 5v5 team in hockey, which the Predators certainly are. A pair of mediocre performances from Colorado 1 in games 1 and 2 should keep their ownership relatively low tonight, and you couldn’t have dreamed at getting the full stack at home for $17,000 on DraftKings a month ago. As always, Tyson Barrie makes for an excellent addition to a Colorado 1 stack.

As for the Predators, their second line should continue to see the most favourable matchups at 5v5. The Avs like to match their top line against the opposition’s best at home, so Nashville’s first line should be the ones having to deal with the onslaught that is Colorado 1 at home tonight. Nashville 2 should continue to post robust scoring chance rates against the depth of the Avalanche for the remainder of the series, having already turned in a pair of admirable performances. They remain a solid stacking target so long as their price stays stagnant.

San Jose Sharks vs. Anaheim Ducks

After being matched up against the second line of the Ducks for games 1 and 2, the Sharks’ potent top line should continue to avoid the Ryan Getzlaf line at 5v5 as the series shifts back to San Jose. Sharks’ coach Peter DeBoer generally likes to use the Logan Couture line against the opposition’s best, rotating his top line in against the bottom three lines of his opponent. Even the Ducks’ so-called shutdown line of Ryan Kesler, Jakob Silfverberg, and Andrew Cogliano were having difficulties maintaining San Jose 1 at home, so mixing in a shift or two against the Ducks’ bottom six only raises the ceilings of Evander Kane and Joe Pavelski tonight. And of course, Brent Burns is a worthy add to any Sharks’ build even with his astronomical price-tag.

The Ducks’ top line should experience a more difficult time at 5v5 in games 3 and 4. Instead of seeing a mix of the Sharks’ bottom three lines, Getzlaf, Ondrej Kase, and Rickard Rakell will have to play near-exclusively against the Sharks’ second line tonight. It’s not the worst matchup for them but San Jose 2 did manage to hold their opponents to under 30 scoring chances per 60 in the regular season, and there’s so many better high-priced stacks available on tonight’s slate. Brandon Montour’s usage has yet to be reflected in his counting stats and his price has dropped as a result. He sits at just $3,600 on DraftKings tonight despite playing 26 minutes in game 2, including an abundance of ice time with the Ducks’ top powerplay unit. He’s the best value option available as far as defencemen are concerned tonight.

By: Brock Seguin

Injury Updates


– Marcus Johansson (concussion) will return to the Devils lineup for Game 3.


– Dan Girardi (undisclosed) will be a game-time decision for Game 3.


– Ryan Callahan (upper-body) will not be in the lineup for Game 3.

– Leo Komarov (undisclosed) won’t play in Game 3 and is questionable for Game 4.

– Matt Grzelcyk (undisclosed) is not expected to be in the lineup for Game 3.

– Sam Girard (upper-body) will miss his second straight game.

Projected Lineups

Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Boston Bruins

New Jersey Devils vs. Tampa Bay Lightning

Colorado Avalanche vs. Nashville Predators

San Jose Sharks vs. Anaheim Ducks

Goalie Rankings

✅ – Confirmed
????️ – Probable
????️ – Projected

1. Andrei Vasilevsky (@ NJD)
????️ [$8,400]
1 1
2. Tuukka Rask (@ TOR)
✅ [$8,200]
3 2
3. Pekka Rinne (@ COL)
✅ [$8,500]
2 4
4. Martin Jones (vs. ANA)
✅ [$8,100]
5 3
5.  John Gibson (@ SJS)
✅ [$7,400]
4 5
6. Jonathan Bernier (vs. NSH)
✅ [$6,900]
6 6
7. Frederik Andersen (vs. BOS)
✅ [$7,600]
7 7
8. Cory Schneider (vs. TBL)
✅ [$7,100]
8 8

Value Plays

FORWARD David Backes ($4,100) Riley Nash ($3,400)
DEFENSEMAN Marc-Edouard Vlasic ($4,100) Brandon Montour ($3,600)
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Brock Seguin

Brock has been the Editor-In-Chief of DailyFaceoff.com since the start of the 2012-13 season, the Host of the DFO Podcast since 2015 and Editor-In-Chief of DailyDugout since the 2017 season.
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