With 11 games on Tuesday’s slate, there are plenty of excellent value picks to potentially feast on. Let’s dig in...
Craig Anderson, OTT vs. VAN ($29)
Anderson has been outstanding to start the 2017-18 campaign. Excluding a four-goal hiccup on Opening Night to an extremely explosive Washington offense, the 36-year-old keeper has allowed two goals or fewer in each game. If a home matchup against a middling Vancouver offense (currently averaging just 2.25 goals per game) wasn’t juicy enough, Anderson will also have superstar Erik Karlsson (foot) returning to Ottawa’s blue line Tuesday.
Goalie to Avoid
Carey Price, MTL @ SJS ($40)
The perennially reliable Price has allowed at least two goals in each game he’s played. Perhaps more disturbing is the fact that the British Columbia native has faced 25 shots or fewer in each game, aside from his Opening Night start in Buffalo when he faced 45 and, ironically, got his only win thus far. San Jose is no offensive dynamo, but $40 is just too much to pay here.
Devin Shore, DAL vs. ARI ($15)
Shore’s name or numbers don’t immediately jump off the page, but his immense opportunity for production certainly does. The 23-year-old is currently centering Dallas’ first power play, a unit that consists of Jamie Benn, Alexander Radulov, John Klingberg, and Tyler Seguin. With that kind of offensive firepower around him, $15 is a bargain for Shore in a potential stack with one of his power-play teammates against Louis Domingue and a porous Arizona defense.
Center to Avoid
Steven Stamkos, TBL @ NJD ($28)
Since returning from a knee injury that caused him to miss the entire 2016-17 season, Stamkos has been solid but has netted only one goal. The 27-year-old just played a tough game against Detroit on Monday night and will be on the road against a New Jersey squad that has been solid defensively. In this price range, there are plenty of other scoring options with better matchups.
Nick Foligno, CLS @ WPG ($17)
Foligno is once again a critical part of the Blue Jackets’ offense, notching three assists and averaging 3:15 of ice time on the power play over the last four games. The Jets have allowed 18 goals in their first five games , and Tuesday’s starter Steve Mason has allowed 11 of those in just two starts. Foligno figures to be a good value play on a potent Columbus offense.
Jakub Vrana, WSH vs. TOR ($15)
Despite seeing a mere 14:17 of average ice time, Vrana has made the most of his opportunity to play on a line with Alex Ovechkin, scoring two goals and adding three assists. The 21-year-old is also seeing action on Washington’s second power-play unit, and his relatively high shot rate makes him an excellent value against a Toronto team that has mostly had success on the offensive end of the ice.
Wings to Avoid
Patrik Laine, WPG vs. CLS ($29)
Laine’s $29 price makes him the second most expensive option at wing Tuesday. Four points through five games isn’t bad by any measure, but it’s not enough to justify that price tag against Sergei Bobrovsky, who has been magnificent in the early going.
Mats Zuccarello, NYR vs. PIT ($20)
Zuccarello has been silent in his last four games, recording no points with only six shots on goal and a minus-4 rating as the Rangers continue to struggle. A visit from the defending Stanley Cup champions is probably not what the doctor ordered, so don’t count on the Norwegian on Sunday.
Rasmus Ristolainen, BUF @ VGK ($19)
Marc-Andre Fleury (concussion) will likely be replaced between the pipes by recent acquisition Malcolm Subban, who was not sharp in his only two NHL appearances prior to Sunday’s unimpressive win. So, Ristolainen — the team’s leader in ice time at even strength — could be the central beneficiary while supporting Jack Eichel and Co.
Ivan Provorov, PHI vs. FLA ($16)
Provorov has become a fixture on the Flyers’ first defensive pairing, leading the team in ice time and posting a plus-2 rating. It’s also an encouraging sign that the 20-year-old Russian has fired 11 shots on goal and recorded an average of 2:06 on the power play, so his price presents nice value against Roberto Luongo and a Florida team that’s allowed 15 goals through four games.
Defensemen to Avoid
Dustin Byfuglien, WPG vs. CLS ($24)
Byfuglien has largely disappointed to start the campaign, notching just two assists and seven shots on goal through three contests. Like Laine, his offensive production isn’t likely to get better against Goalie Bob, so the Minnesota native probably sn’t worth his lofty asking price Tuesday.
Erik Johnson, COL @ NSH ($18)
While Colorado has gotten off to an unexpectedly hot start, Johnson hasn’t done much, as he’s yet to record his first point of the season. The 29-year-old will try to get it done in Nashville, where the home team has been difficult to beat in any facet of the game recently. Johnson’s cold streak could be destined to continue.