By Daniel Dobish
The National Hockey League has 13 games on the schedule Tuesday night, as the regular season slowly winds down. Plenty of teams have already been eliminated from playoff contention, while a handful of others are still fighting for their postseason lives. A few other teams like the Jets have shown amazing spirit lately, despite the fact they have been eliminated from the playoffs. There’s something for everyone on the board Tuesday, and if you pick and choose the right situations you’ll be in the black and able to build up that bankroll to get ready for the playoffs in style.
Let’s get started.
Connor Hellebuyck, WPG at STL ($23): The goaltender of the Jets is worth a roll of the dice in St. Louis. While on the surface this appears to be an unfavorable matchup, the Jets have actually won five straight in this series and four of their past five trips to the banks of the Mississippi River. Winnipeg rolls in on a four-game win streak, too, and they have 13 victories over their past 18 tries against Western Conference teams. The Jets have the firepower to provide Hellebuyck with plenty of offensive support.
GOALIE TO AVOID
Brian Elliott, CGY at ANA ($36): There are three certainties in life: death, taxes and Ducks winning against the Flames in Anaheim. The Ducks have snuffed out the Flames on home ice 26 times in a row, and they’re 38-14 in the past 52 meetings in this series. Calgary has also managed a weak 2-9 record over their past 11 in the second game of a home-and-home situation. On the flip side, Anaheim is 6-1 in their past seven against a team with a winning overall mark while going 36-16 in the second game of home-and-homes. All signs point to another Ducks victory, and that’s bad news for Elliott and his DFS prospects.
Mathieu Perreault, WPG at STL ($19): Perreault streaks in with five goals and 12 points over his past nine outings, picking up at least one point in eight of those appearances. As such, he is a steal at this price level. After a slow start to the season he has picked up the pace in the second half, jelling well with Bryan Little and Calder Trophy hopeful Patrik Laine.
CENTER TO AVOID
Jeff Carter, LOS vs. EDM ($24): Carter has a hefty price tag, but you’ll be paying for production from earlier in the season and not what he has done lately. Yes, he leads the team with 32 goals, but he has lit the lamp just once over his past 11 outings. In addition, he has managed just one point over the past five games. That includes a goose egg in Edmonton on March 28 in the teams’ most recent meeting. Over his past three skates against the Oil he is scoreless with a minus-3 rating. Avoid.
Artemi Panarin, CHI at COL ($30): Strike while the iron is hot. Panarin carries a four-game goal-scoring streak into play, lighting the lamp five times while posting an assist with a plus-4 rating during the impressive run. It’s hard to imagine the Avalanche slowing him down, as they’re dead last in the NHL with a minus-110 goal differential. Panarin posted a goal, an assist and a plus-1 rating with seven shots on goal and 19.0 Yahoo! fantasy points in their most recent meeting March 19.
Blake Wheeler, WPG at STL ($26): Wheeler has a goal and a plus-2 rating in each of his past three games and he has posted 12.0 or more fantasy points in each of his past four outings. It’s more than just a short-term hot streak, however, as he has five goals and 14 points over the past 10 outings dating back to March 13. The Blues are middle of the pack in high-danger save percentage at .874, so the matchup in St. Louis isn’t as unfavorable as one might initially think.
WINGS TO AVOID
Sven Andrighetto, COL vs. CHI ($16): Andrighetto has been a popular selection lately, as he enters play with three goals and seven points over his past six outings. You need to pick and choose your spots to use him, though, and Tuesday isn’t one of the best situations. The Blackhawks rank third in the NHL in high-danger save percentage, making the opposition work hard for everything, while goals have been extremely hard to come by for the Avalanche, even in seemingly favorable scenarios.
Jeff Skinner, CAR at MIN ($24): Skinner’s level of production has been astounding lately, especially on the road. He has scored at least one goal in six straight games away from home, totaling eight goals. However, the Hurricanes have scored a total of just two goals over the past two games, and their once promising chances at a postseason spot appear to be out the window. A trip to Minnesota is not what the doctor ordered, as Devan Dubnyk owns a 22-10-1 record with a 2.13 GAA and three shutouts in 33 home starts.
Cam Fowler, CGY vs. ANH ($18): Fowler has been productive in recent weeks, whether he is etching his name onto the scoresheet or blocking shots. He does a little bit of everything. The rearguard has been especially productive on the power-play in recent games, posting three helpers with the man advantage over his past five outings. He is averaging 9.3 fantasy points per game over his past nine contests, making him an outstanding points-per-dollar value.
Kris Russell, EDM at LOS ($18): The blocked-shot specialist has rolled up plenty of fantasy points this season, but it’s his offensive production that has made him a great value lately. He has four assists with a plus-3 rating over his past six outings. Overall he has just 11 points on the season, so it is a rare offensive hot streak for sure. He has managed three or more blocked shots in six of his past seven outings, though, and that’s where his real value lies for DFS players.
DEFENSEMEN TO AVOID
Roman Josi, NAS vs. NYI ($26): Josi has tailed off lately, as he hasn’t scored a goal in 18 outings dating back to Feb. 25. While he is closing in on 50 points, he isn’t nearly as productive as he was in the early part of the season. Josi might keep you in the positive thanks to his willingness to step in front of pucks and block shots, but at this price level you’ll want goals. He is just not providing that lately.
Jaccob Slavin, CAR at MIN ($18): As quickly as Slavin emerged as a DFS sleeper he has faded back to mediocrity. He hasn’t posted a point in four straight outings and he is without a goal in 12 straight games since his unlikely road hat trick back on March 13 against the Islanders. It’s an unfavorable matchup and Slavin is trending downward. At nine percent of your DFS salary cap, you can do much better elsewhere.
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