The 2021 NHL season is officially underway. Like many sports, the easiest way to maximize your ceiling is through stacking, and that couldn’t be any truer in hockey. For reference, each goal averages 1.7 assists. In this article I’ll help you find the best stacks and NHL DFS picks to make for DraftKings and FanDuel fantasy hockey lineups using Awesemo’s Top Stack Tool.
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Top Stack: BOS1
There are a lot of ways to use game theory on smaller NHL DFS slates, and paying up to be different is often a great strategy. As the most expensive line on both sites by nearly $4,000, Boston’s top line comes with a ton of potential and leverage.
It didn’t take long for David Pastrnak to remind us how dominant he can be in fantasy hockey. With 19 shots, 7 points and a hat trick to boot, he’s averaging over 32 fantasy points in his first three games back. As always, he is supported by two elite players in Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand. These two started out the year without Pastrnak and performed admirably, but they have now taken off, with 11 points in the last three.
TB1 may be able to give this line a run for its money with a fantastic matchup against Detroit. That matchup comes with what will likely be more ownership and 10% less of a chance of being a top-two stack, though. I am not sure if this could set up any better for this trio.
Awesemo’s Top 2 Stack Percentage: 37.6%
Awesemo’s Ownership Projection: 15%
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Over-Owned Stack: VGK2
As mentioned above game theory needs to be taken into account on these smaller NHL DFS slates. Vegas’ second line looks to be a popular filler as the second-highest-owned stack on each site, so pairing them with the right stacks will become crucial to avoid dupes.
The price in relation to the matchup is driving the ownership of this line up to heights of nearly 20%. At under $16,000 on both sites, they fit easily with BOS1 and TB1, which immediately makes them a popular play. Chalk is not a bad thing and is often necessary for DFS. But often times in hockey a simple pivot to a stack of the same price only costs you a few fantasy points and still possesses upside with much more leverage. On this slate I would look to PHI1 or LA1 as great examples of this.
Don’t get me wrong about liking this stack, but it’s going to be a battle getting different. If William Karlsson and Jonathan Marchessault are both on the top power-play unit, you get a correlation boost and may be able to differentiate by leaving Reilly Smith off some stacks.
Awesemo’s Top 2 Stack Percentage: 11.7%
Awesemo’s Ownership Projection: 20.5%
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