NHL Power Plays – 10/26/16

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. Normally it takes a few weeks before enough hard data and trends surface, however, in the meantime there are a few tendencies that can be spotted already.

Wednesday features just four games. Let’s take a quick look back at last night.

What Went Wrong?

Unfortunately, St. Louis fell asleep for the first half of the first period on Tuesday against Calgary. The problem is they never woke up as the Blues allowed two goals early and had little if any shot generation. By the time they did in the third period, it was too little too late. There were some other minor things that went wrong such as Dallas not scoring with their top line much, a few low scoring games, and Boston goalies. Basically it was a mixed bag night with high scoring.

What Went Right?

Switching to Devan Dubnyk turned out to be kind of almost a chalk play in tournaments. His shutout was a huge boost along with what became a chalk stack in Steven Stamkos, Nikita Kucherov, and Vladimir Namestikov. It was a bit expensive but all worth it as Tampa scored seven times in Toronto. Despite that, William Nylander and Auston Matthews still had multiple point nights which helped them hit value. There were some nice contrarian plays across the board as Craig Anderson was one of the lower owned players of the night and yes Anderson got the goalie win. Now to tonight…

Montreal Canadiens @ New York Islanders

Al Montoya vs. New York Islanders

Montoya is a pretty good tournament play on this slate because of his two earlier results. He has a .962 save percentage and more than held the fort when Carey Price had the flu. Montoya has shown his ability to play well despite facing high volume situations. New York scored six times on Minnesota on Sunday and appear to be on a roll generating shots and chances. The goalie will have to be very good early to slow the Islanders attack down.

Thomas Greiss vs. New York Islanders

Greiss is in an okay spot for GPP plays on Wednesday with potential for more upside. The Islanders backstop will give up some soft or low danger goals but he definitely can make some game saving saves also. He will have to do this against a Montreal offense that is shooting a very good 12.4% right now. Game theory is a bit all over the place with this tilt but there have been some wild nights between these two teams. Greiss will have to be great in this one for the Islanders to win.

Boston Bruins @ New York Rangers

Zane McIntyre vs. New York Rangers

McIntyre is a high risk tournament pick with very little upside because what we know of him is minimal at best. The Rangers do have a way of making unknowns look great at Madison Square Garden but with Boston’s injuries and lack of defensive depth, this night is likely not to be easy. McIntyre gave up two goals on 17 shots in relief during the 5-0 loss to Minnesota on Tuesday. It might be okay to fly him out there once in a GPP but little else.

Henrik Lundqvist vs. Boston Bruins

Lundqvist at the very least is a great cash play and is in an excellent spot. However, Boston does give the “king” trouble on occasion but did win two out of three contests against him last season. The goalie has looked better in his last couple starts allowing only four goals. Some players will insert him into GPP’s anyway because of the short slate and Boston’s injury and depth issues.

Washington Capitals @ Edmonton Oilers

Braden Holtby vs. Washington Capitals

Holtby is in a good cash and GPP spot heading into the night if you believe Edmonton is due for another stinker against a quality opponent. The Oilers are 5-1-1 on the season but have not played an opponent of Washington’s caliber. A goalie with a Vezina Trophy and a 1.98 goals against average is always dangerous. Edmonton has a very good top nine forward core and Connor McDavid. Holtby has experience on his side and a better defense.

Cam Talbot vs. Edmonton Oilers

Talbot is in for a tough matchup and will probably be a tournament play only. The high chance of variance in this game and the offensive potential is worrisome as Washington’s power play has woken up some in the past few games. Edmonton is still young and will make their share of mistakes. The problem is teams like Washington often thrive on those, especially guys like Alex Ovechkin. Talbot at least is likely to face around 30 shots.

Nashville Predators @ Anaheim Ducks

Pekka Rinne vs. Anaheim Ducks

Rinne has some upside in GPP’s on Wednesday due to his better than expected start. Nashville is facing around 33 shots per 60 with him in the net and Anaheim can easily put up 30 shots a night anywhere. So, the volume is there. The concern is that the Predators goalie does get a little too aggressive which has him out of position often. Anaheim is playing their third game in four nights so despite apprehension, some will turn to Rinne anyway.

John Gibson vs. Nashville Predators

Gibson is a high risk/high reward cash and tournaments play. The face that he faced a San Jose team that played a up tempo 5 on 5 game only helps and that shot volume will go up if Nashville gets a few more power plays than usual. This could be problematic for Gibson too as Anaheim has to be a little fatigued given the schedule. Jonathan Bernier is injured as well so the netminder will need to be at his best Wednesday.

Quick Plays (DraftKings pricing is used primarily)

Centers

Mika Zibanejad – $5900- NYR vs ARI

A Zibanejad-Miller mini stack has to be attempted given they are both very good plays against a Boston team with depth and goalie issues. The only risk is to watch how other wingers are occasionally paired with the duo or if they get separated for a bit. That seems unlikely tonight as Mats Zuccarello makes a great option for this second line and helps tie in some power play exposure.

Antoine Vermette  — $3800- ANA vs NSH

Vermette is one of my sneaky favorite plays on Wednesday because he will find time in the top six and on the top line at times. He is cheap on all formats and with a short slate could be one of those plays people potentially talk about when it is too late. The risk is low because of price and upside is high because of surrounding talent. That never hurts.

Wingers

J.T. Miller — $4200- NYR vs BOS

Miller is a very good play in tournament formats tonight as his price versatility gives you options to go after the high end targets. His speed made him a natural to replace Chris Kreider who is on the IR due to neck spasms. He can play on the power play and at even strength can score goals in bunches. His 25-30 goal season potential translates well into this match-up because again Boston will not have Patrice Bergeron’s line on him.

David Pastrnak — $6300- BOS vs NYR

Pastrnak is a risky GPP option that might be used in cash as well. The problem is no pundit really knows how Boston will truly come out against the Rangers tonight. There is a suspicion that players like Pastrnak must come out with speed to expose New York’s defense. Boston had chances and Pastrnak in particular last night but they must convert tonight against Lundqvist.

Defensemen

P.K. Subban — $6400- NSH vs ANA

Subban has great upside as Nashville’s special teams are one of the most dangerous in the league. That goes for all formats! Some will go to former Predator Shea Weber tonight but the team with the Honky Tonk is pretty rested. The defenseman has five points in five games and though he has turned the puck over a good bit, Subban is among the top 20 in the league in team chances created. You give what you get with this talented player and Nashville-Anaheim games can often take on a life of their own.

Goalies

Henrik Lundqvist — $8200- NYR vs BOS

This is almost the highest GPP risk play of the night simply because of Boston’s variance to tilt. Tilting in this sense means Boston literally could get dominated on the back end of the back to back. Again, Boston could come out hungry early and that increases Lundqvist’s shot volume. The key is indeed early. New York’s top player has to play like it tonight and not have any letdowns. That goes for the team as well. Other options have to be Thomas Greiss and Braden Holtby. Holtby should face a ton of shots.

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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 and good luck tonight!