Flipping the Script (NHL) - Thursday 3/21

I am just your average DFS player who has found a way to become profitable in a cash game setting. For most of us, DFS is a losing battle and I am here to give an easy break down of the top plays in both the NBA and NHL on larger slates.

Thursday, March 21

Well we are one day closer to Friday which means the weekend is right around the corner. Last night’s slate turned into one with tons of value as injury news was finalized well before lock, making it quite easy to fill out a stacked roster. Hopefully you followed along to my blog as well as the injury news over the course of the day. My final cash-game lineup was as follows:

PGEric Bledsoe (48.6)
PGSeth Curry (31.5)
SGBradley Beal (54.9)
SGKhris Middleton (45.9)
SFJabari Parker (46.7)
SFDanuel House Jr. (9.6)
PFErsan Ilyasova (21.9)
PFMarcus Morris (21.3)
CJoel Embiid (72.4)

Total: 343.2

Recap: As I mentioned in my write-up yesterday, Joel Embiid and Bradley Beal were going to be two players I prioritized in my cash-game lineups. I started with them and then plugged in Eric Bledsoe and Khris Middleton after the news broke that Nikola Mirotic would be out for 2-4 weeks and Giannis Antetokounmpo would sit a second straight night. This left me with $23,100 to spend on my last five players, for an average of about $4,600 per player. I then rostered Shaquille Harrison as my second point guard as Otto Porter was ruled out again, and played Danuel House Jr. as my first small forward.

After all was said and done I was literally $100 over the cap after plugging in Jabari Parker, Ersan Ilyasova, and Marcus Morris as my last three players. I could not figure out who to drop as I loved my lineup and did not want to change anything. My two options were dropping House down to Derrick Jones Jr., or Shaquille Harrison down to Seth Curry. In the end I decided that Curry had a far better match-up than Jones Jr. and saw 25 minutes in his first game without C.J. McCollum. In the end it really did not matter too much as all four players put up similar statistics to one another.

Embiid and Parker were definitely the difference-makers for my lineup as Nikola Vucevic was the highest owned center and Kawhi Leonard was also heavily owned, both of whom I decided to fade. Embiid had a monster night as I expected he would and carried me to cashing in my double-ups, quintuple-ups, and GPP’s.

Tonight we will dive into the NHL’s massive 12 game slate and identify the top plays for your cash-game lineups. You can always message me any questions about the NBA slate tonight and I will do my best to get back to you as I will still have a few NBA lineups tonight.

Let’s get to today’s top NHL plays of the day.

Top Teams to Stack

1. Calgary Flames vs. Ottawa Senators

Calgary is setting up to be one of the top stacks of the night as they take on the Senators who are the worst defensive team in the NHL giving up 3.68 goals-per-game. Sean Monahan ($7,300) is listed as probable so he should slot back into the top line and top power-play unit and become one of the top plays of the night at center. Joining him as an elite play are both of his linemates, Elias Lindholm ($5,900) and Johnny Gaudreau ($8,300). This three man stack is viable in all formats tonight. However, if you are trying to save a little money you have the option to pivot from Gaudreau down to Matthew Tkachuk ($6,600) who mans the second line but joins the top three skaters on the first power-play unit. Either way, getting as much exposure to this offense as possible will be my top cash-game strategy tonight as the Flames currently have the highest projected number of goals on the slate.

Best PlaysSean Monahan, Johnny Gaudreau, Elias Lindholm, & Matthew Tkachuk

2. St. Louis Blues vs. Detroit Red Wings

Vladimir Tarasenko ($8,000) returned to the lineup on Tuesday and quietly put five shots on goal. However it was the second line and Jaden Schwartz who did all of the damage in their 7-2 victory. I fully expect the first line to get back in the points column tonight making Tarasenko, Brayden Schenn ($5,900), and Ryan O’Reilly ($6,600) all elite options in cash-games with their matchup against the Red Wings. Detroit, much like Ottawa, has struggled defensively all year to the tune of a 3.34 GAA which comes in as the fourth worst in the NHL. I slightly prefer these Blues skaters as one-offs to compliment a full Calgary stack, but a full line-stack is also viable if you are fading Calgary.

Best PlaysVladimir Tarasenko, Brayden Schenn, & Ryan O’Reilly

3. Boston Bruins vs. New Jersey Devils

Sticking with the theme of picking on the basement dwellers of the worst NHL defenses, the Bruins head into New Jersey to take on a Devils team that is giving up 3.34 goals-per-game, good for third worst in the NHL. To make matters worse for New Jersey, the Bruins have one of the hottest offenses in the NHL right now. The one issue I will have when it comes to the Bruins tonight is that most of their offensive production comes from Patrice Bergeron ($8,400) and Brad Marchand ($8,500), which their high price tags reflect. David Pastrnak ($7,600) returned to the lineup against the Islanders and should see close to his usual 18 minutes TOI tonight. He may be my favorite way to get exposure to this lineup as he comes at a huge discount from where his price once was. However I do not see myself rostering more than just a one-off from this game tonight.

Best PlaysPatrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand, & David Pastrnak

4. Vegas Golden Knights vs. Winnipeg Jets

Vegas comes into tonight’s game as a solid favorite according to the early lines, as their offense has been one of the most explosive over the last few weeks. The best part about this offense is that their play-makers are somehow still all relatively cheap aside from Mark Stone ($7,600). Jonathan Marchessault ($6,900) has seen his price jump $700 from his last outing but at a price under $7,000 he is still viable. I slightly prefer his other two linemates Reilly Smith ($6,100), who has been crazy consistent scoring double-digit FDP in 12 of his last 15 games, and William Karlsson (($6,600), who is a solid facilitator at the center position. I won’t be going out of my way to stack the entire line, but any of the top line skaters plus Mark Stone are viable one-offs tonight.

Best PlaysMark Stone, Reilly Smith, William Karlsson, & Jonathan Marchessault

Defensemen

1. Mark Giordano ($6,900) vs. Ottawa Senators – Sticking with the trendy team stack, Mark Giordano grades out as one of my favorite defensemen on the night. Giordano is one of the more expensive defensemen on the slate, but also has been one of the most consistent as he has registered 8+ FDP in 14 of his last 15 games. That is the type of production we love to see in a cash-game setting and if I can find a way to fit him in Giordano will certainly anchor the bottom half of my lineup.

2. Charlie McAvoy ($4,900) vs. New Jersey Devils – Although Torey Krug did join the Bruins on their current road trip, he is not expected to suit up tonight. This gives McAvoy at least one more game to man the point on the top power-play unit and he has done a great job of taking advantage of his expanded role in the offense. At a price under $5,000 he makes for an elite value play that you can pair with a guy like David Pastrnak to have some exposure to the Bruins power-play attack.

3. Oscar Klefbom ($4,600) vs. Columbus Blue Jackets – The matchup may not be amazing, but Klefbom has been on a tear lately for the Edmonton Oilers. Despite his cheap price, he has reached double-digit fantasy points in six of his last seven games. These type of numbers are usually seen backed by a price tag in the upper-$5,000 range. I will more than likely be riding the hot hand tonight and rostering Klefbom in my cash-game lineups as he allows for us to pay up at other positions.

Goaltender

High-Tier

Ben Bishop ($9,400) vs. Colorado Avalanche – Bishop will be manning the crease tonight in Dallas against a Colorado team that has split up their three-headed dragon of Mikko Rantanen ($7,700), Nathan MacKinnon ($8,700), and Gabriel Landeskog due to the injury to Landeskog. Since then they have looked vulnerable on the offensive end of the floor and have to matchup against Bishop who has been one of the strongest goaltenders spanning the last month. He is certainly expensive but justifiably so if you can afford him.

Tuukka Rask ($9,100) vs. New Jersey Devils – Despite Rask’s recent struggles, his price has yet to budge too much. However, he has a great matchup against the Devils weak offense and should see plenty of support from his offense to help him secure the win. I’m not sure how much Rask I will have but he is a viable option to lock into your cash-games.

Mid-Tier

Jordan Binnington ($8,500) vs. Detroit Red Wings – The Red Wings have been playing decent hockey over the last week, but from a larger sample size we can see that they rank in the top 5 worst scoring offenses in the NHL this season. Binnington has had his ups and downs this season but sees a great matchup and is priced right around where I think he should be. I expect the Blues offense to get on the board often and early tonight giving Binnington plenty of breathing room in net.

Mike Smith ($8,000) vs. Ottawa SenatorsDavid Rittich will receive the night off in the stead of Mike Smith, who becomes one of the best point-per-dollar plays at goalie tonight. Since shipping out their top three offensive playmakers, the Senators have looked like an AHL team each time they take the ice. I do not expect that to change tonight as the Flames are the heaviest favored team tonight according to the Vegas odds. It would not surprise me if Smith was also the highest owned goalie in cash-game lineups tonight.

Low-Tier

Roberto Luongo ($7,500) vs. Arizona Coyotes – I personally do not feel comfortable with any of the goalies priced under $8,000 tonight, but if you absolutely need to go there, Luongo will probably be your best bet to pull out a victory. Luongo has seen his playing time decrease as the Panthers evaluate backup goaltender Samuel Montembeault. However, Luongo will get his first start since March 7th and should see a healthy dose of shots on goal as the Coyotes cling to the final playoff spot in the West. Just make sure you take caution if you’re going this cheap in your cash-games.

I hope all of this information helps those who have been struggling a bit and I look forward to continuing to cover both the NBA and NHL (and soon MLB!). Best of luck tonight flipping the script! As always, leave any comments or suggestions below.

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