FanDuel NHL: Monday Targets

FanDuel NHL: Monday Targets

This article is part of our FanDuel NHL series.

SLATE PREVIEW

The Canadiens will continue their playoff push, playing host to the Coyotes. Ilya Kovalchuk and Carey Price are carrying that team.

Alex Ovechkin is doing the same for the Capitals, and it'll be a tough test for the Islanders, who have regressed and routinely get outshot by  opponents. The Flyers (15th in GF/GP) and Panthers (5th) should be a high-scoring game, and so should the Canucks (11th) and Predators (9th); all four teams have struggled defensively for long stretches this season.

The Flames are in a tough playoff fight, and with no pressure on the Sharks anymore, they can play spoiler for the rest of the season. They've won three of their past five, including a clean sweep of Alberta last week.

All eyes, however, will be on the Lightning and Blue Jackets, who are facing each other for the first time since the Jackets upset them in the first round last season. It's the same story again: do the Jackets have a chance against the favored Lightning? The Lightning have flipped a switch since December, ranking fifth in GF/GP and second in GA/GP – behind only the Jackets' 1.56 GA/GP. But, surely the well-coached veteran Lightning squad have learned their lesson, and a repeat upset feels highly unlikely.

GOALIES

Curtis McElhinney is a toss-up against Elvis Merzlikins ($8,700) who is probably still the better value play because he's likely to face way more shots than the Lightning goalie.

Carey Price ($8,800) has been almost unbeatable since January, ranked second in wins with 14 (behind Vasilevskiy's 20) with a .925 Sv% (11th, min. 10 GP) facing a league-high 704 shots. The Coyotes are struggling without good goaltending, and Price should be a very popular pick.

Ilya Samsonov ($8,200) should also be a good option against the Islanders, who have struggled recently and fallen behind some of their peers. Last week's loss against Pittsburgh was just the fifth time he had a save percentage below .900 this season.

Sergei Bobrovsky ($8,000) is still not a consistently good option, and the Flyers have been excellent in their past two games, beating the Capitals and heavily outplaying the Devils. It'll be a close match and there's a lot of upset potential for the Flyers.

Jacob Markstrom ($8,000) will likely get the start and he's a slightly better play than Bob against the Preds. If Thatcher Demko ($7,400) he's a strong value play based on his home record (7-0-1, .918 Sv%), and neither Juuse Saros ($7,800) nor Pekka Rinne ($7,600) are advisable picks. The goalies in the Flames-Sharks matchup are better off left unpicked.

VALUE PLAYS

Anthony Cirelli ($5,000) has been excellent for the Lightning. He had a five-game point streak snapped against the Isles but continues to get top-six minutes. The Jackets are a tough matchup but if the top line is locked down look for Cirelli's line to shoulder some of the offense.

Kyle Turris ($4,100) is finally playing like a second-line center under increased usage by John Hynes. He skated a team-high 21 minutes on Saturday and has five points in his past six games.

With Brock Boeser out, Jake Virtanen ($4,100) is going to get a lot of looks on the top line. The young power forward has raised his game this season with 15 goals and 31 points, and with consistent playing time he's also generating a fair share of shots (2.1 per game).

Jonathan Drouin ($3,000) returned to the lineup and had just one shot on goal, but is back on a line with Max Domi. The Coyotes' goaltending has not been good without Darcy Kuemper, and while Drouin will probably need a few games to get going, his talent relative to his current price is very affordable.

FORWARD LINE STACKS

Montreal Canadiens (TOTAL: $14,200)

C – Nick Suzuki ($4,800)
W – Ilya Kovalchuk ($5,000)
W – Joel Armia ($4,400)

This line has been so productive it might as well be their first. Kovalchuk was the overtime hero once again, Suzuki has eight points in his past seven games and Armia is a reliable finisher.

Vancouver Canucks (TOTAL: $17,300)

C – Elias Pettersson ($7,000)
W – J.T. Miller ($6,200)
W – Jake Virtanen ($4,100)

Facing a non-divisional, non-rival should result in less abuse for Pettersson, but what's interesting (and cheaper) about this line is that it has been arguably more effective than having Boeser on it. Miller continues to be a threat every night while Virtanen's speed and shooting is a nice complement. Pettersson, Miller and Virtanen have a 59.81 CF% compared to a 58.38 CF% with Boeser.

DEFENSEMEN

John Carlson ($7,200) and Roman Josi ($6,700) remain neck-and-neck at the top of the pile. Carlson's scoring rate has slightly dipped, but they are also the only point-per-game defensemen available.

Victor Hedman ($5,800) and Seth Jones ($5,300) are both solid options. They do everything for their respective teams and will see plenty of ice time in all situations. There's a little more upside for Columbus because the Lightning lead the league in penalties taken (65) since Jan. 1, while the Jackets are the most disciplined (34).

No Shea Weber means more minutes for Jeff Petry ($4,900), who plays on the power play, shoots a lot and also blocks a lot of shots. His upside is arguably higher than Hedman or Jones', but he's also a little less consistent.

Quinn Hughes ($4,900) is fifth in scoring among defensemen since Jan. 1, including five points on the power play. As the playoff races heat up for the Canucks, look for Hughes to get even more ice time despite his relative inexperience.

Rasmus Andersson ($3,800) is getting a lot more minutes lately especially in Mark Giordano's absence. He's skated over 20 minutes in three straight games.

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jason Chen
Jason joined RotoWire in 2013. In 2014, he was a finalist for the FSWA Hockey Writer of the Year award. Jason has also written for Yahoo Sports, CBS Sports, The Hockey News, The Hockey Hall of Fame's Legends Magazine, and Centre Ice Magazine.
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