This article is part of our FanDuel NHL series.
It's a minefield for Tuesday's slate because so many games are expected to be close. The Flames (-110) at Devils (-108), Bruins (-104) at Panthers (-112) and even Wild (-118) at Canucks (+100) have rather slim odds.
Entering Monday's games, the league average per team was 3.04 goals per game with a power play efficiency of 21.8 percent. It's the third time in four seasons teams are averaging over three goals per game, and power plays have never been more efficient. Some of this is early-season bias where scoring tends to be a little inflated, but it's something to keep an eye, especially if it impacts the over/under.
Thatcher Demko, VAN vs. MIN ($7,300): At the very least, Demko will rack up the saves. Arguably no other goalie has been more important to his team than Demko, who ranks among the leaders in high-danger saves. The Canucks haven't found their groove yet but at full strength they should be a slightly better team than the Wild, whom they defeated in the 2020 qualifying playoff round. It's their first meeting since that series.
Tristan Jarry, PIT vs. TB ($7,900): This is good value for Jarry, who will be facing Andrei Vasilevskiy at the other end of the ice but the Lightning are playing the second half of a back-to-back. Jarry has been excellent so far with six goals allowed in four games and a big reason for their success. The Lightning have scored just seven goals in their past four games without Nikita Kucherov.
Juuse Saros, NSH vs. SJ ($8,100): Saros will draw James Reimer at the opposite end as the Sharks finish their five-game road trip. The Bruins snapped the Sharks' winning streak and stalled their momentum, while the Preds are finally finding their scoring touch with nine goals in two games after scoring just eight in their first four games.
Connor Hellebuyck, WPG at ANH ($8,300): The Jets are definitely not having any trouble providing goal support right now and the Ducks have lost three straight with 15 goals allowed. It could be a high-scoring game considering how mediocre the Jets defense and how awful their PK has been, but the Jets have the clear advantage. The Ducks look like a much worse team – closer to what we expected – than what their 4-1 season-opening win against the Jets suggested.
Darcy Kuemper, COL vs. VGK ($8,400): The Knights are a lot less intimidating without Mark Stone and Max Pacioretty, and the Avs have had two days' rest following a three-game road trip that was capped off with a win against the Lightning. Kuemper's start has not been ideal, but while the Knights are missing key pieces, the Avs are mostly at full-strength after injuries and COVID disrupted the start to their season.
Evan Rodrigues, PIT vs. TB ($4,700): Rodrigues will remain 1C with Jeff Carter out of the lineup due to COVID protocol. He'll have top goal scorer Jake Guentzel on his left wing and the Lightning have been particularly vulnerable lately with 12 goals allowed in their past three games. He had two points and five shots skating in Carter's place last game.
Jonathan Dahlen, SJ at NSH ($3,900): The Sharks gave William Eklund a night off but it doesn't look like they'll do this kind of load management with Dahlen, who has plenty of pro experience in Europe. He continues to produce a first-line rate despite his limited minutes and now has four points in four games.
Mathieu Perreault, MON at SEA ($3,600): The Habs will continue to mix up the lines until they play out of their slump, but right now Perreault is skating on a line with Cole Caufield and Tyler Toffoli. Caufield is still looking for his first goal, but Perreault has two good finishers on his line and coming off a hat-trick performance in his last game.
Peyton Krebs, VGK at COL ($3,000): Multiple injuries means Krebs moves up the lineup and will play on the second line. He's still looking for his first point and he's yet to capitalize on the chances he's been given, making him more of a higher-risk proposition.
Flames at Devils
It's really their only line that has really gotten going with Lindholm and Gaudreau tied for the lead in team scoring with seven points apiece. The Flames are 3-0-0 so far in their road trip after a rough start to the season. This line routinely plays close to 20 minutes per game.
Avalanche vs. Golden Knights
It'll be expensive but very popular with the Avs at home expected to trounce the shorthanded Knights. The Avs could treat this as a statement game after defeating the defending champion Lightning in their previous game. This is also their first game at home with pretty much their full roster.
Predators vs. Sharks
Expect the lines to change if Tolvanen is unavailable for this game – Matt Duchene is most likely to join this line – but just in case the Sharks' early-season magic has worn off, stacking the Preds' second line could pay dividends. Granlund and Forsberg look better as a pair than Forsberg did with Ryan Johansen and Duchene on the top line, and Tolvanen adds some sneaky upside with his ability to score goals.
Canucks vs. Wild
Minnesota's center depth beyond Joel Eriksson Ek could prove troublesome, and that means Bo Horvat's line could take advantage. Garland has been one of their best players and their leading scorer, and Pearson has scored three points in four games and also gets ample opportunities on the power play. This is the Canucks' home opener so they'll get last change, giving Travis Green to get the matchups he wants.
Jets at Ducks
This will be the No. 2 line if Mark Scheifele and Blake Wheeler are once again unavailable due to COVID. Connor has three consecutive multi-point games and Dubois is also on a four-game point streak. Svechnikov keeps the cost of this line stack low, but he's got sneaky offensive upside, too, as a former 20-goal scorer in the AHL getting a top-six chance for the first time.
Cale Makar, COL vs. VGK ($6,500): I think Vegas not having their best defensive players, including potentially Alec Martinez, means the Avs offense will run all over them. Makar was off to a slow start but did manage to get two assists against the Lightning last game.
Roman Josi, NSH vs. SJ ($6,500): He remains an excellent all-round defenseman and an elite fantasy option even if the Preds' offense hasn't been very good lately. Josi scored four points against Minnesota last game.
Brent Burns, SJ at NSH ($5,300): Both Burns and Erik Karlsson are climbing back up the list and it's good to see the vets doing well after tough seasons. Burns has the slight edge over Karlsson because he tends to shoot pucks more often and block more shots.
Ty Smith, NJ vs. CGY ($4,500): Smith skated on the top pair with Dougie Hamilton after playing 20 minutes in his season debut. Clearly, the Devils like what they see, and relative to his salary and being paired with Hamilton, Smith seems like an attractive value play.