Jason Zucker ($4,600) – Evgeni Malkin ($6,500) – Bryan Rust ($6,200)
The Penguins may have lost Game 1 but it wasn’t because of a lack of effort. They fired 41 shots on Carey Price but couldn’t solve the veteran netminder in the third period or overtime. As expected, the Philip Danault line was matched up against Sidney Crosby’s line and made life difficult for Sid. With that matchup going on, Malkin went up against the Nick Suzuki line and had their way with them. PIT2 had out-chanced their opponents 10-2 (83.3 SCF%) but specifically dominated MTL2, 9-1. They had very little success in limited minutes vs. MTL1 but expect those minutes to stay limited.
Malkin did not get on the scoresheet in Game 1 but did get eight shots on net to salvage 15 DK Points. Where the Penguins struggled was on the power-play. They were 1-for-7 in the game and if that improves in Game 2, Malkin and Rust should be able to pick up a point or two. With Crosby distracting Danault, Malkin, Rust and Zucker should be able to run wild against the Canadiens’ middle-6.
Johnny Gaudreau ($5,800) – Sean Monahan ($4,900) – Elias Lindholm ($4,800)
Gaudreau, Monahan and Lindholm all connected on the power-play for the Flame’s first goal of the series but their depth pieces did the rest of the heavy lifting in Game 1. Now the Flames have a chance to take a stranglehold on the series against a Jets team that is expected to be without both Mark Scheifele and Patrik Laine.
The Mikael Backlund line typically takes care of the opposition’s top line, in this case, Blake Wheeler, Kyle Connor and whoever else they decide to put up there. That leaves Gaudreau, Monahan and Lindholm to face a very average middle-6. In Game 1 they saw a lot of the Cody Eakin line. In the regular season, Eakin and Nikolaj Ehlers gave up nearly 34 scoring chances against/60, so expect CGY1 to have more success in Game 2.
Making CGY1 even more appealing is their ridiculously low price tag. Expect them to be highly-owned today but fading them could spell disaster. As a whole, they’re the eighth most-expensive line on the slate.
Tyler Ennis ($3,600) – Leon Draisaitl ($7,300) – Kailer Yamamoto ($4,500)
Game 1 was a disappointing result for the Oilers but their big guns still produced in DFS. Draisaitl had a three-point game (1G / 2A) with four shots for 27.5 DK Points. Connor McDavid had nearly the same day, posting 27.3 DK Points.
We tabbed this as being the highest-scoring series and Chicago didn’t get better defensively overnight, so Edmonton will have plenty of chances again in Game 2. Jonathan Toews did a terrific job against McDavid in Game 1, which is why I still like the Draisaitl line a little better in Game 2. They mostly saw CHI3 and CHI4, which should bode well for them going forward.
With that said, I don’t love full-stacking this line. Yamamoto is fine but Ennis doesn’t shoot enough to save his day if he doesn’t put up any points. Instead, playing Draisaitl and Yamamoto with a cheaper line or punt D-men should allow you to get McDavid in there as well.
Tampa Bay 2
Alex Killorn ($4,500) – Anthony Cirelli ($4,500) – Tyler Johnson ($3,400)
The Lightning will appear in their first action of the 2020 Playoffs tonight and their second line looks extremely appealing. Cirelli was on-pace for 53 points (19G / 34A) and he and Killorn were extremely strong at 5v5 all season (53.2 xGF% / 52.9 SCF%).
Tonight the face a Capitals team that could be without John Carlson and were already below-average at limiting scoring chances at even-strength. TBL2 may not pop-off but they’re in a great spot and are so cheap you can get really creative with the rest of your lineup.
Victor Hedman – TBL ($6,000)
Hedman was a late arrival to the bubble but is expected to play in Game 1. Given his uncertainty and high-price tag, it could keep his ownership down a bit. Hedman is arguably the best defenseman in hockey but is the fourth-highest D-man on the slate. Even without Steven Stamkos, the Lighting power-play is lethal and Hedman should chip-in and correlates nicely with Killorn and Johnson on TBL2.
Erik Gustafsson – CGY ($3,800)
Gustafsson is a no-brainer if you are playing CGY1. He plays with all three of them on the top power-play unit and comes in sub-$4,000. He played nearly 20 minutes in Game 1 while firing three shots on goal, so there’s a lot of value to be had here. With CGY1’s price tag being so cheap, you can easily power-play stack the Flames and have enough leftover for some elite players.
Ethan Bear – EDM ($3,500)
Bear did not see any power-play time in Game 1 with their top-unit playing the entire time. However, he still logged nearly 24 minutes and had one goal and three blocked shots. If you can’t afford to pay-up for Oscar Klefbom, Bear correlates nicely with Draisaitl—they played 7:28 TOI together at 5v5 in Game 1.
Matt Murray – PIT ($8,100)
Murray was solid in Game 1, stopping 32 of 35 shots in the 3-2 OT loss. The Penguins will go back to their more experienced goalie tonight and remain the biggest favourites (-170) on the slate. Montreal proved they can hang with Pittsburgh in Game 1 but taking back-to-back from Crosby and Co. won’t come easy. If you have the salary, Murray is a strong option tonight.
Robin Lehner – VGK ($7,900)
Lehner has turned into one of the best goalies in the NHL and he was lights out in his three games behind a fantastic Vegas team. He went 3-0-0 with a 1.67 GAA, .940 SV% and one shutout with the Golden Knights but two of those three games were against non-playoff teams.
Still, Dallas struggled to score goals all season, ranking 26th in GF/gm (2.58) and Vegas was fourth-best in limiting scoring chances against/60. This is shaping up to be a low-scoring affair and Lehner makes for a great play as the third-most-expensive goalie.
Connor Hellebuyck – WPG ($7,100)
As much as I think the Flames are probably going to win this game with Scheifele and Laine out, Hellebuyck is just way too cheap. Just like in Game 1, you can almost guarantee that he will face a heavy workload and that could lead to a big day if he brings his A-game and the Jets figure out a way to steal this one.
It might be an absurd stat but he has been terrific in afternoon starts over the last two seasons. He is 9-6-1 with a sparkling .938 SV% in those 16 such appearances.