FanDuel NHL Blue Line Power Plays: January 11

WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 28: Goalie Braden Holtby
WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 28: Goalie Braden Holtby /
FanDuel NHL
A top FanDuel NHL pick in lineups on Wednesday, January 10th 2018 was Devan Dubnyk in goal. /

Welcome to FanDuel NHL Blue Line Power Plays for Thursday, January 11th 2018.  We’re a daily fantasy hockey column focused on top FanDuel NHL plays for your lineups each day.

With only two games on the slate for Wednesday, and only ten total goals scored, most of the highest scoring lineup combinations landed around 170 to 180 FanDuel NHL points.  While we focused on Anton Forsberg at goalie, he only had 25 saves and didn’t get the win.  Still, Anton has a solid game, giving up only two goals, but Devan Dubnyk was the top pick of the night.

While only giving up one goal to the Blackhawks, Dubnyk had an awesome 34 saves and the win for 35.2 FanDuel NHL points.  That may not seem like an amazing amount of points, but he was a top goal, and top overall, FanDuel NHL lineups pick last night.  Paired with one of our top defender picks, Morgan Rielly (23.2 FanDuel NHL points) and James van Riemsdyk (29.6), you were set up well to win almost any cash game, and land in the top group for GPP plays.

Tyler Bozak had two assists and four shots on goal for 24 FanDuel NHL points, and Jason Zucker and Mikael Granlund each has and assist, to headline some of the other top plays of the night.  Matt Duchene was quiet on Tuesday after rumors surfaced he was dealing with an illness.  But Duchene was clearly able to bounce back on Wednesday, with two assists and three blocked shots for 24 FanDuel NHL points.  With any combinations of these players, you had a great night!

Here’s a look at the NHL schedule for Thursday, January 11th 2018:

Blue Jackets at Sabres (7pm ET)

Hurricanes at Capitals (7pm ET)

Flames at Lightning (7:30pm ET)

With only three games on the NHL schedule tonight, we have another small slate, for what is typically a big Thursday night of games.  Also, all three of these match ups appear lop-sided, again, in several ways.

On the road, the Blue Jackets are mediocre scoring 2.77 goals and giving up 3.05 goals, each landing them in the middle of the NHL.  But they’re in Buffalo where the Sabres are only scoring 2.11 goals per game, the worst in the NHL, and are giving up 3.16 goals per game, close to the worst int he NHL

Meanwhile, the Capitals and Lightning are both rock-solid at home.  The Lightning’s defense is giving up 2.57 goals per game, must worst than the Caps 2.22, but they’re scoring 3.86 goals per game on home ice, second best in the NHL and better than the Caps 3.30 average.

That bodes poorly for the Hurricanes who are traveling to Washington, D.C. to play the Caps, and Flames who are traveling south to Tampa.  The Canes are only scoring 2.71 goals on the road, which likely means they get very little tonight.  And they’re allowing 3.25 goals on the road, opening the door wide open for a high-scoring affair for the Caps.

Meanwhile, the Flames are struggling to score on the road, but are only giving up 2.53 goals on the road, fourth best in the NHL.  That means the Flames and Bolts came could be a low-scoring result, which warrants caution when considering Bolts players for your lineups tonight.

As always, we’ll look to update our picks and final lineups prior to lock on our twitter account @FantasyCPR so make sure to give us a follow for all the late breaking lineup news.

Now let’s start building our NHL DFS optimal lineup by looking at the top centers for this slate…

FanDuel NHL
NEWARK, NJ – DECEMBER 29: A FanDuel NHL favorite at center, Jack Eichel #15 of the Buffalo Sabres skates against the New Jersey Devils at the Prudential Center on December 29, 2017 in Newark, New Jersey. The Sabres defeated the Devils 4-3 in overtime. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /

Top FanDuel NHL Centers: Jan 11th

Once again, it’s fairly easy to afford some of the best centers on the ice tonight, but this time because they’re more affordable.  We’re fading Steven Stamkos ($8,800), which may seem silly.  But we don’t like the Bolts offensive odds against Mike Smith tonight.  And Stamkos hasn’t provided a 20 FanDuel NHL point effort since December 28th.  This salary is too hefty to pay for a sub-20 result.

While we love Bobrovsky tonight, which we’ll talk about later, we can’t avoid Jack Eichel ($7,600).  Over the last two games Eichel has two goals and two assists, averaging around 30 FanDuel NHL point per game.  In the three games prior, he had neither a goal nor assist, but still peppered the goal with three to five shots and provided some point value.  The great thing about Eichel, even when he’s not scoring points, he’s still a threat to pile up ten-plus FanDuel NHL points with shots and blocked shots.

We love the Capitals match up tonight against Scott Darling.  So, either Nicklas Backstrom ($6,600) or or Evgeny Kuznetsov ($6,700) are in play tonight.  Between the two, while Kuznetsov has a higher, 13.06 FanDuel NHL point-per-game average, Backstrom is hotter right now, with an incredible six assists and two goals in the last four Caps games.  Also, if you plan to grab Ovi at winger, Backstrom is a great stack at center.

Brayden Point ($5,900) has been inconsistent over the last week, but we continue to stick with him.  On Tuesday, Point piled up three assists, with only one shot on goal, but another three blocks for a total of 30.4 FanDuel NHL points.  This is the great thing about the Bolts second line leader, he’s capable of exploding with FanDuel NHL points, making his $5.9K salary seem like a bargain.

The Blue Jackets have a great match up in Buffalo tonight, and Pierre-Luc Dubois ($5,700) has bounced back over the last two games with two goals, one a power play goal, and an assist.  Dubois averaged just under 25 FanDuel NHL points-per-game in the last week.  Pierre-Luc is a  great mid-salary range value stack with one of the more expensive picks, like Eichel.

If you’re really digging for value, and can stomach the match up risk, Yanni Gourde ($4,400) is a great bargain-bin pick.  Leading the Bolts third line, the 26-year-old rookie Canadian is averaging nearly eleven FanDuel NHL points-per-game, and has three goals and one assist in the last three games.  Goure is also getting a consistent 15 minutes of ice time per game.

Now let’s take a look at the wings we want to stack along with our centers…

FanDuel NHL
CALGARY, AB – DECEMBER 9: A great mid-range FanDuel NHL salary value pick, Micheal Ferland #79 of the Calgary Flames in action against the Vancouver Canucks during an NHL game at Scotiabank Saddledome on December 9, 2017 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. (Photo by Derek Leung/Getty Images) /

Top FanDuel NHL Wings: Jan 11th

While we don’t love the match up for the Lightning tonight, Nikita Kucherov ($9,000) is the best player on the ice tonight, and has the potential to provide more than one goal and/or assist.  So don’t like the Mike Smith match up scare you off.  That being said, saving at least $200 and picking Alex Ovechkin ($8,800) is also a slam-dunk play.

Ovi now has a goal or assist in each of his last five games.  Even more impressive, Alex has at least two points (goal and/or assist) in three of his last five games.  In total Ovi has four goals and five assists during that time span.  Even with as little as two sniper shots from Ovechkin, he can create 25+ FanDuel NHL points for your lineup.  And with the match up facing a struggling Darling, we love Ovi again tonight!

If you’re going expensive in every other position, a re-emerging Artemi Panarin ($7,300) should be a solid top pick at winger tonight.  Panarin has 12 shots on goal in his last two games, along with a goal or assist in each game.  Along with the rest of the Blue Jackets, Panarin struggled offensively in the last part of December and early January.  But that appears to be a temporary lull.

Another pivot, or stack if you can afford it, from Stamkos is Tyler Johnson ($6,400).  Unfortunately, after his hat-trick on Tuesday, and totaling four goals over the last two games, Johnson’s salary has finally climbed above $6K.  Tyler used to be a consistently great mid-salary range value play, but now he’s appropriately priced.  That being said, he’s still hot and a big threat to Mike Smith‘s night.

In general, we hate the Canes offense tonight, but if you’re looking for a sneaky GPP pick at wing, contrarian lineup, or for some reason love to fade the Caps, Teuvo Teravainen ($5,600) is smoking right now.  In his last four games, Teuvo has two goals and four assists, six total points, and is averaging around 20 FanDuel NHL points-per-game.  Teravainen has really been hot since December 23rd, when he piled up three assists against the Sabres.

While we expect the Bolts to have great defense and solid goaltending tonight, if the Flames get any by Vasilevskiy, Micheal Ferland ($5,200) is likely to be involved.  Incredibly, Ferland has a goal AND assist in each of his last three games, and against some of the leagues top goaltending right now.  This is one of our favorite flier picks for GPP or cash plays, to mix up the lineup.

Finally, we’re big on the Caps offense in D.C. tonight, and Devante Smith-Pelly ($3,400) and Tom Wilson ($3,500) are two value picks we love.  Smith-Pelly is on the Caps top regular line with Ovechkin and Backstrom.  If either score, without the man advantage, Smith-Pelly has a great shot of being involved, on a dirt-cheap salary.

Meanwhile, Tom Wilson has been Barry Trotz favorite tool to re-fire any slumping lines.  Tonight, Wilson is playing with Kuznetsov on the Caps second line.  Even though he’s off the power play lines, Wilson has been logging around 15 minutes of ice time and isn’t afraid to shoot the puck several times per game.

FanDuel NHL
COLUMBUS, OH – OCTOBER 6: A top FanDuel NHL defensive pick, Seth Jones #3 of the Columbus Blue Jackets warms up prior to the start of the game against the New York Islanders on October 6, 2017 at Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images) /

Top FanDuel NHL Defenders: Jan 11th

While Victor Hedman ($6,700) is a consistent top play on defense, we like John Carlson ($6,000) more tonight.  Either is a great top pick for defense tonight, but Carlson’s value is significantly greater.  With a 14.41 FanDuel NHL point-per-game average, and five assists and two goals in his last five games, Carlson is a $700 cheaper way to lock in a double-digit point pick on defense, with the potential for 20 to 30 points.

Again, picking Flames is tempting, but we need to understand the risk.  Mark Giordano ($5,700) has at least one point in each of his last four games, and five of his last six.  Playing against Martin Jones, Devan Dubnyk, Jonathan Quick, and company is no easy task, but Giordano has been rolling while doing it.

Zach Werenski ($5,200) is one of the top young talents on defense tonight, but we like Seth Jones ($5,500) over Werenski tonight.  Either could be a solid pick, but Johns has four assists in his last two goals, and seven in his last seven games.  Jones is rapidly building his point-per-game average toward 13 points, almost a point and a half above Werenski’s.  And with Jones, you can land 15 to 20 points affordably.

Digging for value, grab Matt Niskanen ($4,200).  Since returning to the ice recently for the Caps second regular line, Niskanen has logged 20+ minutes each game, and provided an assist against the Canucks on Tuesday, along with three shots on a blocked shot.  Matt should continue to roll tonight on a very cheap salary.

Finally thought, anyone else completely baffled by Noah Hanifin‘s selection in to the NHL All-Star game this season?  Bonkers!

FanDuel NHL
Sergei Bobrovsky could have the best match up and value among all FanDuel NHL goalies on Thursday, January 11th 2018 /

Top FanDuel NHL Goalies: Jan 11th

We only have six goalies for tonight.  Two confirmed starters I’m scratching off my list immediately are Linus Ullmark ($7,000) and Scott Darling ($7,400).  First, Darling has given up 16 goals in his last three starts.  Yes, you read that correctly.  And tonight he’s guarding the crease against one of the best offenses in the NHL.  No thanks!

Ullmark is at least appealing.  This is Linus’ first NHL start of the season.  His last NHL start was on April 9th 2017.  During the game, Ullmark gave up three goals and obtained the loss.  However, he was able to snag and impressive 33 saves and developed a .917 save percentage against a red-hot, at the time, Lightning offense.  Still, we have so little to go on with Ullmark, he’s only worth a flier in GPP.

Unfortunately, that narrows our goalie options down to the four most expensive on the list, Andrei Vasilevskiy ($9,500), Braden Holtby ($9,100), Sergei Bobrovsky ($9,000), and Mike Smith ($8,200).  While we generally like Smith this season, I don’t love his odds in a likely low scoring road-ice affair against the Lightning.

Vasilevskiy is easily the best goalie on the ice tonight, but the match up against Smith presents some risk.  In some regard, they cancel each other out.  So we’re going with either Holtby over the Canes in D.C., or Bobrovsky over the Sabres in Buffalo.  Both the Canes and Sabres have some decent offense lately, but neither is well equipped to beat their opponent tonight.  Between the two, we like Bob more only because the Sabres have been atrocious at home, and the Canes have some decent metrics on the road.

So, after reviewing all of our favorite options, here’s an example of a lineup we put together for Thursday, January 11th:

C     Eichel (BUF $7,600)

C     Dubois (CLS $5,700)

W   Ovechkin (WAS $8,800)

W   Ferland (CGY $5,200)

W   Wilson (WAS $3,500)

W   Smith-Pelly (WAS $3,400)

D    Carlson (WAS $6,000)

D    Jones (CLS $5,500)

G    Bobrovsky (CLS $9,000)

Note: This is a recommended lineup after discussing our top options for the week.  You should use this as a guide, and provide your own input when building FanDuel NHL lineups.  We are not telling you, or selling you, to use this lineup.

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