NHL Yahoo Cup: DFS strategy, lineups for Round 6

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The high-octane Flames look like a good fantasy play on Thursday. (Photo by Brett Holmes/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
The high-octane Flames look like a good fantasy play on Thursday. (Photo by Brett Holmes/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

The sixth round of the free-to-enter NHL Yahoo Cup runs on Thursday, and there's still time to join the contest and win your share of $5,000 if you haven't already!

Round 6 features an extremely busy night of NHL action, as 11 games and 22 teams are scheduled to take the ice.

With so many options on the board, you're going to see a lot of different lineup builds. Here are three that I strongly recommend.

Option 1: Flaming hot Flames stack

The Calgary Flames have a date with the Montreal Canadiens, who haven't played well at all to start the 2021-22 season. (Yahoo Fantasy)
The Calgary Flames have a date with the Montreal Canadiens, who haven't played well at all to start the 2021-22 season. (Yahoo Fantasy)

The Montreal Canadiens have allowed three goals or more in five of their last six games, and things won't get any easier as the red-hot Calgary Flames come to town.

The Flames have hit the three-goal mark in eight of their last 10 outings, making Thursday's meeting against the Canadiens a potential smash spot for some of the squad's top stars. I specifically targeted the team's top power play, including all five members - Elias Lindholm, Sean Monahan, Johnny Gaudreau, Matthew Tkachuk, and Rasmus Andersson - in my lineup. Calgary's man advantage ranks 10th in the NHL, clicking at a 24.4 percent rate, while Montreal's penalty kill grades out at 29th in the league, killing just 68.6 percent of its infractions.

I also included a pair of Los Angeles Kings in my lineup with Alex Iafallo and Kale Clague, as the team is set up nicely with a road date against the Ottawa Senators. Iafallo has been rolling lately, recording 10 points during the seven-game point streak he's riding. Clague has been promoted to the first power-play unit with Drew Doughty out, and he's notched four points in his last six games, including a pair on the man advantage. Both players will benefit from matching up against a Senators penalty kill that ranks 28th in the NHL.

Between the pipes, I went with Jacob Markstrom as the Flames are set up as favourites in the game, and he owns a strong .940 save percentage this season while posting four shutouts. I also went with Connor Hellebuyck, because after a rocky start, the 2019-20 Vezina Trophy winner has allowed just two goals in each of his last two starts. The Winnipeg Jets are also listed as heavy home favourites over the San Jose Sharks.

Option 2: Long live the Kings stack

The Los Angeles Kings should continue its winning ways against the Ottawa Senators. (Yahoo Fantasy)
The Los Angeles Kings should continue their winning ways against the Ottawa Senators. (Yahoo Fantasy)

I teased it in Option 1, but the Kings are really in a nice position to continue their offensive success on Thursday.

The squad is riding high on a six-game win streak, and its opponent, the Senators, are not. Ottawa has lost five-straight contests and eight of its last nine, and the team is currently undergoing a bit of a COVID-19 outbreak as seven members have been placed in the protocol.

I stacked the first power-play unit - Anze Kopitar, Dustin Brown, Adrian Kempe, Iafallo, and Clague - as Ottawa's penalty kill currently ranks inside the bottom-five of the league. Kopitar, Kempe, and Brown are all also featured on Los Angeles' first line, so that's a plus.

I also went with a Washington Capitals skinny stack with Evgeny Kuznetsov and John Carlson. Both are listed on the Caps' first power-play grouping and have had success in the early going. Kuznetsov has tallied five goals and 16 points through his first 12 games of the year, while Carlson has notched six points during the five-game point streak he's currently on. Washington's opponent, the Detroit Red Wings, have the 26th-ranked penalty kill.

In net, because the Kings stack is so cost-efficient, I was able to pay up for Markstrom while also snagging Hellebuyck at a pretty nice value.

Option 3: Avsolutely amazing stack

The Colorado Avalanche's top power play is set up well. (Yahoo Fantasy)
The Colorado Avalanche's top power play is set up well. (Yahoo Fantasy)

Even though Nathan MacKinnon won't be in the Colorado Avalanche's lineup on Thursday, I still think the team is worth stacking.

MacKinnon is slated to miss the next three weeks with a lower-body injury, allowing J.T. Compher to slide up to the first line and top power-play unit. At $17, Compher is a nice value considering his expanded role and early-season success. The 26-year-old has potted five goals and nine points across 10 contests. Gabriel Landeskog and Mikko Rantanen will play alongside the centre at even strength and on the power play, while Cale Makar, who practiced on Wednesday, could return to play in Thursday's game.

The reason why Colorado's man advantage is worth stacking stems from the fact that its opponent, the Vancouver Canucks, have the second-worst penalty kill in the league. While the Avs' power play has struggled and ranks 31st in the NHL, a date with Vancouver's brutal penalty kill could bring forward some positive results.

Unfortunately, Compher isn't listed as a centre so I couldn't also add Andre Burakovsky to complete the power-play stack and had to choose two centres from a pair of different teams. I went with Monahan because he's tallied four power-play points in his last five games, and Nico Hischier, as he's registered four points in his last three outings and is seeing time on the first line and top power-play unit.

In addition to Hellebuyck, I selected Darcy Kuemper for this lineup. The former Arizona Coyote has been just OK to start the 2021-22 campaign, but the Avs are set up as big home favourites, making it probable that he can pick up the win.

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