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FanDuel NHL: Value Plays for the Week

Michael Clifford

Michael Clifford writes about fantasy hockey for RotoWire. He was a FSWA finalist in 2015 and 2013 for Hockey Writer of the Year. Former SportsNet hockey columnist, where he churned out four articles a week.

Welcome back for another week of FanDuel bargain bin options in the NHL.

Last week was a bit disappointing. Both Riley Sheahan and Dustin Brown went pointless in their respective games, though thankfully, they werenít minuses. Nikita Soshnikov had one good and one bad game, while Nick Holden was held pointless against Winnipeg (again, thankfully, he wasnít a minus). James Reimer had a shutout in Edmonton, which was great, while Garret Sparks saw his price go up and got shelled by the Senators.

As always, there will be one skater per position priced $4,000 or less, and a couple of cheap goalies at the end.

Center

William Nylander (Toronto) - $3,100


There is a full youth movement happening in Toronto, and part of that movement is future potential cornerstone William Nylander. The rookie tore up the AHL with 77 points in 74 games, which made this call to the NHL inevitable.

Most rookies donít get a feature role out of the gate. That has not necessarily been the case for Nylander, who has managed at least 15 minutes in seven of eight. In those seven, Nylander managed 18 shots on goal, which provides a reasonable floor to work with.

This Saturday, the Leafs have a home game against Buffalo. Though Ryan O'Reilly appears to be on the verge of returning for the Sabres, that doesnít necessarily hamper Nylanderís value. He is used mostly against secondary lines, which means lining up against Jack Eichel a fair amount. As good as Eichel is offensively, like most young players, he has struggled defensively and has been on the ice for the most high-danger scoring chances against per minute of all regular Sabre forwards. That bodes well for the offensively-gifted Nylander, and is a good way to save money on a monster Saturday slate.

Left Wing

Dwight King (Los Angeles) - $3,700


The Kings have been notorious for shuffling their lines, and the latest iteration has King skating alongside Jeff Carter and Tyler Toffoli. The team has had some players going through slumps, namely Carter and Toffoli, so putting them together is likely in an effort to get them going.

This trio has played exceptionally well together over the last two seasons. According to Puckalytics, they have played over 478 minutes of five-on-five time together, which works out to roughly 30 games of ice time (not really a small sample). As a unit, the three are on the ice for 48.8 shot attempts against per 60 minutes, less than when either King (51.51) or Carter (51.29) are playing separately. This is important, because it minimizes the opportunities for goals against. Conversely, as a trio, they are on the ice for 67.24 shot attempts for per 60 minutes, more than any three of them alone. In short, they play very well together.

Los Angeles has a home game Thursday against the Rangers, a team playing their second game in as many nights. That would seem to be a great opportunity to sneak in a very cheap King on a busy schedule.

Right Wing

Sven Andrighetto (Montreal) - $3,600


This shouldnít come as much of a surprise, but when Andrighetto gets a featured role with the Habs, he tends to produce fairly well. Sometimes, players need a spot lower on the depth chart to produce, but in the 19 when Andrighetto has under 14 minutes, he has just four points (all goals), while in the 15 where he has at least 14 minutes, he has nine points (two goals and seven assists). Playing with better players has helped his production a fair amount.

Andrighetto has skated at least 18 minutes in four straight, and at least 15 in six of his previous seven. That is largely due to the fact he is up on the top line with Alex Galchenyuk and Max Pacioretty. That includes the top power play unit with the same linemates.

Montreal is at home to Buffalo on Wednesday, in Ottawa on Saturday, and at home to Calgary on Sunday. All three are good matchups offensively for this trio, particularly Ottawa and Calgary. For those who want to get a piece of the top line without paying a top line price, Andrighetto is the way to do so.

Defence

Ben Hutton (Vancouver) - $3,600


Itís gone by pretty quietly, but at time of writing, Ben Hutton has managed 10 points since Feb 1. In that stretch, he has at least 20 minutes in 15 out of the 17 games, and has managed at least 20 minutes in 14 straight. The downside, of course, is he plays for the Vancouver Canucks, so he also has a minus-5 rating during that span.

The added bonus for Hutton here is he seems fairly cemented into the top power play quarterback role. When enjoying that much power play time with the Sedin twins, itís hard not to produce. That is why half of those 10 points have come while a man up. Even-strength points are more valuable on FanDuel, but top power play minutes are better for value than none.

This week, the Canucks have a game on Wednesday hosting Colorado, and then visit the Oilers on Friday. Those two days are shorter slates, which means searching for value is a bit tougher. I would especially look for Hutton on Friday, as the Oilers are 24th in high-danger chances allowed while short-handed in 2016.

Goalie

Laurent Brossoit (Edmonton) - $6,500


Brossoit has been recalled by the Oilers, and played Monday night against Nashville. For those unfamiliar with Brossoit, he is a potential goaltender of the future. The 22-year old has managed a .918 save percentage over his last 81 in the AHL, and will probably get some starts for the rest of the season.

There is no telling when he will start, but the Oilers have four games this week. At his price, Brossoit is worth the risk in tournaments, especially with Vancouver in town on Thursday and Colorado visiting on Saturday.

Matt Murray (Pittsburgh) - $4,800

The rookie goaltender is one of those players, like Garret Sparks, who is underpriced by way of being a recent call-up. The Penguins have four in six this week, including a back-to-back against the Flyers and Capitals on the weekend. I suspect Murray will get the game against the Flyers, and at his price, makes a great tournament option in order to spend up with the skaters.

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.