NHL Power Plays 2/26/17   

This week’s schedule is up and down because of the bye weeks. 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 seven games on Sunday but only a five game main slate. Let’s get cracking on this edition of NHL Power Plays.

What Went Wrong?

Sadly, if it is an afternoon or early start game, it seems the New York Islanders just do not show up. Yesterday, they were trounced 7-0 by Columbus. Any Islander players owned had a tough day and the goaltending was next level dreadful. The New York Rangers top six was awful aside from Mika Zibanejad and Chris Kreider in their overtime win. Buffalo allowed five goals to Colorado of all teams as they stumbled out of the gates early. Toronto could not hold the fort against Montreal as the Canadiens broke through in the overtime for the win. Philadelphia disappointed again but did generate lots of shots against Pittsburgh. Washington was in some funk aside from John Carlson as they lost yesterday to Nashville. Alex Ovechkin seemingly just disappeared.

What Went Right?

Hey, that early slate was hotter than anything. There was the Columbus route but the Joonas Korpisalo shutout was poetic in a way. He was so low owned because of his volatility and yet it worked. The Blue Jackets were a mixed bag of offense but stacking it right was vital. Nashville was straight forward. The first line and Roman Josi did an excellent job in boosting DFS bottom lines. San Jose’s Martin Jones became almost a GPP play with his 35 save effort against Vancouver. Who expected Vancouver to have that many shots? Exactly. Even the first line of New Jersey performed quite well against the Rangers accounting for all three goals. That 70’s line got things started with a third period breakthrough versus Anaheim. For two periods. It was definitely a cold, cold sweat. Let’s get to this five game main slate.

 

The Schedule For Sunday, February 26, 2017

AwayHomeTime (ET)
BostonDallas12:30 PM
Calgary @Carolina3:00 PM
Columbus*NY Rangers*@5:00 PM
EdmontonNashville*@5:00 PM
OttawaFlorida7:30 PM
St. Louis #Chicago7:30 PM
Buffalo*Arizona @8:30 PM

 

* = Back end of back to back.  # = coming off bye week. @ = Third game in four nights.

News And Notes (Well More Notes)

Like we mentioned before, FanDuel and DraftKings are running their main slate starting at 5:00 PM so that will be today’s focus. FantasyDraft is as well so here are those value plays. Please note that some teams are on their third game in four nights, on a back to back, or there’s a Buffalo-Arizona game.

FantasyDraft Value Plays:

  1. Christian Dvorak (ARZ) — $7100
  2. Nick Bjugstad (FLA) — $7800
  3. Josh Anderson (CLB) — $7100
  4. Ryan Dzingel (OTT) — $7500
  5. Dan Girardi (NYR) — $5900
  6. David Savard (CLB) — $6200
  7. Ottawa Goaltending — $15,100 (it’s high risk!)

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Quick Plays (DraftKings pricing is used)

Centers

Jonathan Toews – $6600 – CHI vs STL

Toews is a great play in cash and even in some GPP formats just because he is hot and has six goals and ten assists in the last ten games. Power play points are up and that first line is playing like a first line should. Okay, we lied. They are just fire engine hot. Power play wise, he is worth taking a shot on today in most lineups.

Aleksander Barkov — $6600 – FLA vs OTT

Barkov is a solid GPP play and cash option against Ottawa on Sunday. Even most people acknowledge the crazy high shooting percentage but this is riding the wave. He has seven goals in the last ten games on only 22 shots. Florida’s first line sets the tone for that entire offense. They just drive play at a higher gear than most top lines. With Boston’s first line only in the early or all day slates, Barkov’s line jumps to the head of the class…almost.

Mika Zibanejad — $5300 – NYR vs CLB

Zibanejad is a nice GPP play because of his chemistry with Chris Kreider. They are back together at long last and both had two points yesterday in the 4-3 overtime win over New Jersey. Columbus is vulnerable to giving up goals in bunches against New York. Revenge will be on their minds too as the Blue Jackets scored six times in their last meeting at MSG.

Brandon Dubinsky — $4800 – CLB vs NYR

Dubinsky is a somewhat risky GPP play against New York on Sunday. The center does have points in five out of six contests but his price is a little high. His lower shot and chance volume is troubling but the center does love to play at MSG against his former team. He is not much of a power play threat but watch out for him at even strength with Cam Atkinson. Columbus and New York does have some game stack potential.

 

 

Wingers

Filip Forsberg — $6400 – NSH vs EDM

Forsberg is a chalky play in tournaments and yet the temptation is extremely high to play him anyway. He has three points in each of his last three games (7 G 2 A). Edmonton is a better team on the road but it is hard to get away from a trio like this. Viktor Arvidsson and Ryan Johansson are in play as well. Arvidsson, like Forsberg, loves to shoot the puck often. The second period has been something to watch. Maybe it is the long line change.

Patrick Kane — $7900 – CHI vs STL

Kane will be another chalky cash/GPP play on Sunday against St. Louis because of goal potential. He does have eight goals in his last ten games after all. Blues-Blackhawks games often have this 3-2 or 4-3 type of tempo where the top players tend to dominate. Game theory is not always right obviously but it is hard to go away from it. Vladimir Tarasenko could be a good play here just going against the Chicago penalty kill, for example.

Chris Kreider — $5800 – NYR vs CLB

Kreider is going to be a nice idea in tournaments tonight because he has upside from playing with Mika Zibanejad again. They had such great chemistry early in the year before the Zibanejad injury and looked in fine form yesterday. The winger had a goal and assist on two shots. He does have to shoot off the rush more (his biggest strength) and Columbus should give him chances there. This may be another up and down Columbus-New York game with high event probabilities.

Radim Vrbata — $5300 – ARZ vs BUF

Again, Vrbata is a good tournament play and even cash on Sunday against Buffalo. Buffalo’s defense was shredded repeatedly by the Avalanche and Arizona’s top line can create chances especially at home. The forward has points in his last eight games! Consistency has been his calling card of late right as the trade deadline nears. Arizona’s kind of dormant power play may get a boost against the 30th ranked road penalty kill in the league. Martin Hanzal becomes a very useful option here.      

Oliver Bjorkstrand — $3600 – CLB vs NYR

Bjorkstrand will be a HIGH risk GPP play on Sunday against New York because his potential is high but it can also be very low. It is either all or nothing on “Bjorkstrand Derby”. He is that up and down of a player but there is no denying his skill level. It comes down to the execution for the young player and he is on one big stage. Brandon Saad or Nick Foligno will be safer plays but the temptation is very real.

Evander Kane — $5700 – BUF vs CHI

Kane is still a solid idea in tournaments tonight because he has goal potential on a night like this. Buffalo has a top ten power play and the winger has seven goals in the last ten games. He had a clunker in Colorado of all things. Jack Eichel did as well. Maybe it was coming off the bye week but Buffalo looked quite rusty in that first period and never recovered. The expectation is for a better effort tonight. Arizona’s penalty kill is not very good either. Kane has point potential and could get five shots on net or more.

Richard Panik — $5000 – CHI vs STL

Panik is a great play for all the correlation and top six exposure. The crazy part is he runs hot for about 10-12 games and then cools right off. He is on another one of those runs with 11 points (five goals) in that last eight contests. The risk could be high but the wave could prove to be worth it against a St. Louis team that may try too hard to cover the Kane line on Sunday. His price is over 20% higher than it was last Sunday and yet still worth it. Some will pivot to the much cheaper Nick Schmaltz on a night like this.

 

Defensemen

Roman Josi – NSH vs EDM – $6000

 

Josi is a must play tonight against the Oilers simply because of how hot Nashville’s offense has been of late. The over has hit in Predators’ games for nine straight now. Josi has a very nice floor but also has six goals and six assists in the last nine games! Nashville’s offense is heating up at the right time and expect their ownership to be chalky yet one has to give this a shot again. Ryan Ellis is a good pivot for salary relief. Erik Karlsson could have sneaky upside for the undermanned Ottawa squad.

 

Rasmus Ristolainen – BUF vs ARZ- $5600

 

Ristolainen sits at a decent price point tonight and is in play in GPP’s and Cash games. He looked better against Colorado but was not rewarded on a few good looks. The defenseman did manage an assist but his night could have been even bigger. If he gets five or six shots in Arizona tonight, results will be as good or even better. He was one of the few Buffalo players that had it going offensive from the start last night.

 

Alex Goligoski – ARZ vs BUF – $3500

 

Goligoski comes rolling into this game as a questionable play only because when does he revert to the shell of a defenseman he was most of the year. He has eight points in his last ten games and comes off a night where he blocked seven shots! His shot volume is low but Goligoski is being more assertive with puck movement. That was something Arizona has sorely missed from his game all season long. He may even have a tiny bit of power play potential tonight.

 

Aaron Ekblad – FLA vs OTT – $4500

 

Ekblad is a play with upside tonight when one considers he had seven shots in his last game. There is risk involved because Florida can often produce a high shot total with not much in the way of results. However, a chance always exists that Ekblad can find the back of the net. One can slide down to Michael Matheson, who is cheaper but the Florida rearguard is a decent option.

 

Seth Jones – CLS vs NYR – $5600

 

Jones has been logging big minutes lately and has been a bit up and down when it comes to his floor. Shots have been erratic at times too. However, he does have eight points in his last nine games and did score twice the last time these teams played in New York. This could be a similar game to the one seen in Newark yesterday. Do not be shocked if it happens. David Savard could be a true value pivot here.

 

 

Goalies

James Reimer – FLA vs OTT – $7700

Reimer should be a tournament play with upside geared towards the chances of a moderately high save count. This is contingent on the health of Mark Stone and Mike Hoffman but they did skate in morning practice. That is encouraging at least. Either way, Florida has a weird tendency to give up more shots at home than they should.

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If for whatever reason, you are a little queasy on Reimer then wait a little closer to confirmations. A lot of confirmations did not come in early. Tonight’s a night where one could even go with backup options but will they get the W? That is quite a question. This is the type of slate where risk could be rewarded with the right mix of chalk plays. Watch out for any late changes as well due to the flu and other illnesses like the mumps. It has been a factor of late.

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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 on the social media. Good luck with tonight!