“Going on the Power Play” is an article that will break down NHL DFS picks to target for their Power Play prowess, and some Punt Plays that look for players $4000 or under on DraftKings. You can find our NHL archives here
With the “Punt Plays” being either younger players or players that find themselves in good situations, it’s crucial to remember to check lineups. Any lineup changes will be mentioned on Twitter or in our subscriber group chat, and this article updated accordingly. Referee information updated once available, and courtesy of ScoutingTheRefs.com
Welcome to 2017! A quick apology for not keeping up with this feature consistently, but going forward look for it at least twice a week. Without further ado let’s dive in!
Power Play Prowess
RW – TBL – $6,900 on DraftKings, $7,700 on FanDuel:
There isn’t a much better special teams match-up tonight than Winnipeg and Tampa Bay: Tampa Bay is converting the third-highest power play percentage (23.53%) and has also drawn the third-most power play opportunities, and face a Jets team that have given up the fourth-most power plays against (138) while getting scored on 76.09% which is fourth-worst.
The referees for the night aren’t the most-enticing on the slate – that honour goes to the SJ/LA game – but the teams will be kept in line by Dan O’Halloran (13th most PP/Game) and Frederick L’Ecuyer (20th most PP/Game). Both referees have a pronounced tendency to call more penalties on the road team, as L’Ecuyer calls only 44% against the home team and O’Halloran is a little worse at 46%; L’Ecuyer is the third-ranked referee for home teams while O’Halloran is the 12th-ranked.
Nikita Kucherov has the most points with the man advantage of the Lightning forwards with 4G-8A – Victor Hedman actually leads the team in PPPts with 2G-13A and would also make a nice play today – and Kucherov sees a little over 3 minutes/game on the PP. Kucherov has a career high PPPts/60 rate of 7.4/60, and a man advantage SOG rate of 17.8.
The starting goalie for the Jets tonight will be Connor Hellebuyck, who has a 4v5 GSAA of -5.07 which is fourth-worst of qualified goalies. Hellebuyck mostly struggles with HD scoring chances, but is also the 14th-worst at Medium Danger saves (89.09%); with the TB first unit set up to allow Kucherov to unload one-timers from the bottom of the right circle, that MDSV% will be a real advantage for Kuch and the Lightning.
Tampa’s first power play unit features Kucherov’s two EV linemates (Tyler Johnson and Ondrej Palat) along with Alex Killorn and the aforementioned Victor Hedman on the point. That’s a fairly expensive five-man stack that has a lot of potential tonight, but could be rolled out with some of the punt plays below. Kucherov works as a single bullet as well, or in a full line stack.
Other PP Plays
D – NSH – $4,000 on DraftKings, $4,800 on FanDuel:
With P.K. Subban on injured reserve Mattias Ekholm has stepped up to play the point on the first power play unit for Nashville, which is just one of the reasons to look his way tonight for only $4000 DK dollars.
After a great second half of 2015-16, Ekholm came into this season with big expectations and to this point hasn’t played less than 21 minutes in a game – and to be even more specific, Ekholm hasn’t played less than 22 minutes in all but two games. That automatically gives Ekholm a nice floor, as he currently averages 0.06BLKs/minute and 0.06SOG/minute; assuming he continutes to see the 24 minutes he’s seen without Subban, that gives him a floor of 3.0DK points.
Offensively Ekholm hasn’t always been a big threat, but he’s picked up four points (1G-3A) in his last five games after picking up nine in his first 31 games. He’s had an awful year for luck, shooting only 1.9% after hitting seasons of 7.0% and 8.1% the last two years, and that could start to click tonight on a potent first PP unit.
The 6’4″ d-man has been underrated through his 263 career games, as a 53.6% EVCF/1.9EVCorsiRel player. He’ll be paired with Matt Irwin again, which has been a tremendous combination in their 124 even strength minutes together: 57% CF, 75% GF, and 61% SCF. Ekholm tends to match up against the top competition forwards, but against a Montreal team littered with injuries that’s fairly meaningless tonight.
Floor: 3.0 DraftKings points
Ceiling: 6.5 DraftKings points
Other Punt Plays
Good luck tonight!
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