NHL Power Plays 11/20/16
Short slates can be a bit of a pain for everyone. The goal of this article is to highlight and summarize the potential plays so we can focus our salary cap resources on a specific set of players.
There are five games today, but Sunday’s main slates feature only four games. Let’s take a quick look back at last night’s games so we can then look ahead.
What Went Wrong?
Sadly, Pittsburgh managed just one goal on Saturday night, despite 47 shots on net. Winnipeg was in single digits for shots on goal halfway through the third period as they went down to Boston meekly 4-1. That definitely impacted some plays because there were people in on parts of their top six. Chicago’s chalk plays almost went up in smoke but Vancouver blew a 3-0 lead to lose in overtime 4-3, which only added to the pain for those that completely faded Chicago. Colorado scored three times in the third period to put a dagger in the hearts of Devan Dubnyk owners who looked like they were headed towards a shutout.
What Went Right?
Hey, it was play the contrarian goalie night and then some guy named Connor McDavid. McDavid had a hat trick while Jesse Puljujarvi had a nice daily fantasy night as well. That was a more frequent stack of sorts in cash games than GPP’s but it did have double digit ownership in some places. However, Anders Nilsson and Mike Smith did not. For those that watched “Hit The Ice” last night, we did hint at these possibilities. Both goalies had over 40 saves in their respective wins and put their teams on their backs. Also, the Aleksander Barkov-Jaromir Jagr-Jussi Jokinen combination struck for two goals in Ottawa. They might not stay together that long depending on what coaching does with Nick Bjugstad who is likely back on Tuesday. For last night though, Florida’s first line looked more like its old self.
Winnipeg Jets @ Carolina Hurricanes
Cam Ward vs. Winnipeg Jets
Ward is a good tournament play because his hot November almost dictates a player to ride him one more time before Carolina goes on the road. Winnipeg is not going to go sub 15 shots again so at least there should be a bit more shot volume. Ward has had quite the November posting over a .940 save percentage and in his last five starts has had a .938 save percentage or greater four times. He is more square to the shooter and been more in control of his game. Winnipeg will be dangerous after their effort against Boston because the Jets are just that enigmatic of a team.
Connor Hellebuyck vs. Carolina Hurricanes
Hellebuyck is a high risk GPP play with limited upside as he is the likely starter. It is not that the goaltender is bad but no one seems to know which Winnipeg team we are going to get. The Jets netminder had four great starts in a row before Philadelphia lit him early on Thursday night. These things do happen and the presumptive 1A in Winnipeg is going through some growing pains with a team defense that can be out in left field sometimes. This could be a contrarian and very low owned pick today given what comes up later.
Florida Panthers @ New York Rangers
Henrik Lundqvist vs. Florida Panthers
Lundqvist is more of a cash option with some GPP ownership potential tonight. Florida can possess the puck and almost keep away but against the Rangers’ core of forwards that may be difficult at times. Consider the Panthers are on the back end of a back to back on the road. Also, keep in mind that New York can be very hit or miss on Sunday nights at home. They can blow a team out or let someone like Arizona hang around. The goalie had two great starts against Vancouver and Calgary before the game against Columbus where Lundqvist was a little too aggressive. New York has been allowing 30+ shots with increasing frequency and that will help workload at least.
James Reimer vs. New York Rangers
Reimer is an iffy and high risk contrarian tournament play. The Florida goalie is not CONFIRMED yet. He was a tire fire in Toronto last week and his last two starts were poor to say the least. The six goals allowed on 30 shots against the Maple Leafs will stick in the minds of fantasy players for a little while. Yet, someone is going to take the risk given how the Rangers might be looking ahead to Pittsburgh on Monday night.
Calgary Flames @ Detroit Red Wings
Petr Mrazek vs. Calgary Flames
Mrazek has upside and in a good spot especially when it comes to GPP’s on Sunday. First, he might have to oppose Brian Elliottin net. The Detroit goalie has not been CONFIRMED yet but is the probable goalie. This could be a get well game against a Calgary team that is horrendous on both the power play and penalty kill. Detroit’s penalty kill is a bit troubling at 77.8% but they are better at home at least. Can Mrazek find his form since he has had a few extra days off? That is the question.
Brian Elliott vs. Detroit Red Wings
Elliott has small upside in tournaments only Sunday and that is if he plays. His penchant for giving up three or more goals this season is frightening as he has in four start starts. The save percentage which was nearing .900 has dipped back to .882 and it partially has to do with him struggling with rebound control. Detroit is a team that will test you with low and medium danger shots and they have a power play which again is better at home. Elliott has to find himself and quick because Chad Johnson has looked much better with the same defense.
Los Angeles Kings @ Anaheim Ducks
John Gibson vs. Los Angeles Kings
Gibson is a pretty good cash play but likely better tournament option for Sunday. He has not been CONFIRMED in net but is likely. The only concern is his up and down performances over the last five or six starts. Los Angeles is their heated rival and these games often do take a more mid event kind of posture. They are physical and scoring chances can come out of almost nowhere. The Anaheim goalie has been pretty good against Los Angeles.
Jeff Zatkoff vs. Anaheim Ducks
Zatkoff is an extreme risk contrarian play on Sunday at best. He has not been CONFIRMED yet and worse, the goalie is coming back from injury again. The best course of action is to wait and see if he is 100% and that may not be found out until close to lock. Los Angeles has not gotten its act together and the goalie is 0-3 on the season with an .875 save percentage. It may be wise to wait or even stay away!
Quick Plays (DraftKings pricing is used)
Vincent Trocheck – $5500- FLA vs NYR
Trocheck would be considered a moderate play with upside. The reasons for that upside is his price is still reasonable and the Rangers have been giving up shots of late. Also, his speed and acceleration should provide him with more opportunities against a New York team that defensively can be put on its heels rather easily at times. The center had chemistry with Jonathan Marchessault on Saturday and the duo could even be a mini contrarian stack on Sunday because they will not have to face New York’s top defensive pairing.
Nic Dowd — $2900- LAK vs. ANA
Dowd is a value GPP play on Sunday as his price is insanely cheap and his role is greater than people think. He may not shoot a lot all the time but that ability as a playmaker is impressive. The center has assists in three straight games and ten points on the season already. This is a “Shane Shot” on the short Sunday slate.
J.T. Miller — $5700- NYR vs FLA
Miller is going to be a nice little play in GPP’s. He has four points in his last five games and 17 already on the season. What is encourage is that the forward has a shooting percentage of 16.7%. That is right around his 16.3% from last year. His numbers are not a luck type of thing as his output is still increasing. The Rangers forward will be up against Florida’s bottom defensemen for a good portion of tonight’s game and that could be a considerable benefit.
Jeff Skinner — $6400- CAR vs WPG
Skinner is a nice buy low GPP option for those who like players with a good floor. When the left winger shoots early, he is an impact player. Against Winnipeg, the forward will need to keep on firing away as he does get a good deal of medium and high danger chances. He only has an assist in the last five games but there is that feeling that the forward is in a great spot tonight.
Brady Skjei — $3400- NYR vs FLA
Skjei has some solid GPP potential for his value strictly. He has not scored a goal all season but does have 11 assists. The defenseman is in an offensively sheltered role mostly playing about 17 minutes a night. Gradually his role has increased to some more power play time and that is encouraging. Skjei has a nice shot when he utilizes it and that will be something he needs to do going forward. Florida may not see it coming but the defenseman is due for a goal sometime soon.
Petr Mrazek — $7900- DET vs CGY
This is the hardest decision because Mrazek has upside in GPP’s because he has been so bad in net for Detroit this season. The good thing is that Brian Elliott is arguably worse and Calgary again cannot be trusted on the road. He is a goalie that has not been CONFIRMED and Detroit is due to break out a bit. Detroit has only eight goals in the last five games. It is a situation where the game sets up well as long as Mrazek keeps composed.
There will be lots more on Twitter as always. Do not be afraid to ask the tough or the easy questions. You can follow me @ChrisWasselDFS and good luck tonight!