There is a five-game slate tonight which includes:
- A great matchup between the Penguins and Blue Jackets.
- An hot-Islanders team against an ice-cold Red Wings team.
- The return on Jonathan Huberdeau and Aleksander Barkov vs. the Ducks.
- Brian Elliott going for three wins in a row in New Jersey.
- Finally, Cam Talbot and the Oilers looking to snap a brief losing streak in Carolina.
This Cheat Sheet includes DraftKings salary as well as SaberSim dfs projections. These projections don’t tell you exactly what’s going to happen. One game samples have too much randomness to pin down exact predictions. Rather, the projections represent what a player’s performance would look like on average if that particular matchup were played over and over again. There is a wide range of possible outcomes, and the projections represent the average of those possibilities for each player.
John Tavares – @ DET – ($7,200)
SaberSim Projection: DK-4.01
All of a sudden the Islanders are looking like a force to be reckoned with. They are on a seven-game point streak (6-0-1) and Tavares has led the way. In what has been a disappointing season for Tavares, he has collected eight goals and six assists (14 points) while averaging an impressive 4.33 shots per game in his last nine contests. Tavares has found his form and he draws a great matchup tonight in Detroit.
Leon Draisaitl – @ CAR – ($6,000)
SaberSim Projection: DK-3.46
Draisaitl is great in his own right, but playing with Connor McDavid makes him even more intriguing. Draisaitl has ripped off four goals and five assists (nine points) in his last eight games. He doesn’t shoot as much as you would like (averaging just 1.75 shots per game in that eight-game span), but he doesn’t need to shoot a lot to score goals when he’s playing with McDavid. He has a crazy 17.5 shooting percentage, but he managed a 14.3% last year and playing with McDavid allows him to maintain a high shooting percentage.
Joanthan Huberdeau – vs. ANA – ($5,100)
SaberSim Projection: DK-3.42
Huberdeau will make his long-awaited season debut tonight vs. Anaheim. After suffering an Achilles injury in the preseason, Huberdeau missed the first 51 games of the season but will be reunited with Aleksander Barkov and Jaromir Jagr tonight. A season ago Huberdeau averaged 2.29 shots per game and registered 59 points (20G / 39A) in 76 games, most of which were alongside Barkov and Jagr. The Ducks and John Gibson don’t present a great matchup, but Huberdeau’s salary floats in the middle and even if he’s a bit rusty, he’s going to be fired up to be back in the lineup.
Anders Lee – @ DET – ($4,800)
SaberSim Projection: DK-3.29
Like a lot of Islanders, Lee has had a tough season, but has started to pick things up. Lee has scored three goals with four assists while averaging a great 4.63 shots per game over his last eight games. Just the shots alone is enough for me to want him in my lineup, but the matchup with a struggling Petr Mrazek makes him a fantastic option.
Matt Cullen – vs. CBJ – ($4,200)
SaberSim Projection: DK-2.46
Cullen should be a good value play tonight. He returns after a six-game absence due to a foot injury and he’ll return in a great spot. With Conor Sheary sidelined for at least one month, Cullen will get the first crack at playing alongside Sidney Crosby. Cullen has 17 points (8G / 9A) and just 43 shots in 43 games this season, but playing with Crosby makes him an intriguing option tonight.
Seth Jones – @ PIT – ($5,200)
SaberSim Projection: DK-2.32
Jones has cranked things up. He scored two goals on four shots in New York on Tuesday and has registered six points (2G / 4A) with 16 shots (4.0 S/PG) in his last four games. Jones is a force on the Blue Jackets’ back-end and while it’s not the best matchup, he is one of the hottest defensemen in the NHL right now.
Andrej Sekera – @ CAR – ($4,300)
SaberSim Projection: DK-2.68
Sekera has turned into a daily fantasy beast in the last month. The veteran defenseman has collected eight points (3G / 5A) in his last month, but it has been his consistent shot production and shot blocking that has generated a bunch of fantasy points. Over that 14-game span, Sekera has averaged 2.57 shots and 2.07 blocked shots, making him an impressive dfs commodity.
Calvin de Haan – @ DET – ($3,700)
SaberSim Projection: DK-1.75
de Haan doesn’t put up a ton of points or see a bunch of power-play time, but he is a value option that is averaging 2.0 shots on goal and 2.57 blocked shots over the last seven games. If you need to save money on the blueline, de Haan is a good way to do just that.
Thomas Greiss – @ DET – ($7,600)
SaberSim Projection: DK-4.61
Since the Islanders waived and sent Jaroslav Halak to Bridgeport (AHL), Greiss has gone 7-2-3 with a 1.99 GAA, .936 SV% and two shutouts—that’s the third best SV% and sixth GAA over that span. Greiss has been lights out and draws a great matchup against a Red Wings team that has lost five in a row.
Cam Talbot – @ CAR – ($7,500)
SaberSim Projection: DK-4.79
Talbot has lost two in a row, but you don’t have look back too far to find a stretch where he won six of seven. Talbot has had a really strong season and tonight he faces a Hurricanes team that has started to take a few steps backward—they won on Tuesday but have lost five of their last six.
James Reimer – vs. ANA – ($7,100)
SaberSim Projection: DK-4.10
Reimer had a tough start to his Panthers career but he’s been much better lately. Reimer had a .941 SV% in December and a .920 SV% in January. Reimer will face a Ducks team that has won four of their last six, but the Panthers should be rejuvenated with Huberdeau and Barkov back, so I like their chances at a ‘W’ tonight.