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Thursday night is a big night in the NHL DFS streets. With a 10-game slate on tap tonight, there is no shortage of options to choose from. Colorado and Ottawa are both playing on the second of back-to-backs. This Power Play article will use Awesemo’s Premium NHL Tools to help dole out the NHL DFS advice to help with building lineups on DraftKings and FanDuel tonight. The Awesemo NHL projections and ownership projections are two of the best tools to utilize when constructing stacks and making the optimal NHL DFS picks. Let us go position by position and pinpoint some of the top plays and stacks for Thursday, Dec. 2.
NHL DFS Picks, Tops Stacks & Lineup Optimizer Plays
Sebastian Aho (CAR vs. OTT): DraftKings – $7,500 | FanDuel – $8,900
Aho looks to right the ship after the Hurricanes have lost two straight. They get one of the best matchups of the night, which means ownership could come into play. Rod Brind’Amour continues to shake up lines, and as of now Aho will pivot Andrei Svechnikov and Martin Necas. There is certainly a possibility of changes after the morning skate, though. Aho is an elite playmaker that can put a ton of pucks on net when needed. Ottawa has struggled in all facets of the game this year. At five-on-five they carry the worst Corsi and the fourth-worst expected goals against. They are spending the second-most time short-handed on tonight’s slate, and with the third-worst expected goals against on the penalty kill, that is not a recipe for success.
Roope Hintz (DAL vs. CBJ): DraftKings – $5,700 | FanDuel – $6,500
Hintz is coming off a huge night against Carolina on Tuesday. He scored a hat trick on four shots, with a 37.5-DraftKings-point night. He has tallied 9 points in his last five games and at least a point in nine of the last 10 games. A date with Columbus at home is a good way to keep his offensive momentum moving forward. With last change, Rick Bowness will get to pick his spots that he wants to deploy Hintz and company, and there will be plenty. At five-on-five Columbus ranks in the bottom 10 of every defensive metric. Dallas’ top line as a trio has been phenomenal. With a large sample, the trio carries a 57.3% Corsi-for, 3.06 expected goals per 60 and just under 19 high-danger chances. There is not a line that Columbus has that will be able to keep them at bay.
Alex Ovechkin (WSH vs. CHI): DraftKings – $9,700 | FanDuel – $9,900
Ovechkin is pushing $10,000 and will likely go under-owned because of it. As a stack the Capitals top line is easily in consideration at $20,600, though. Ovechkin has been a nightly contender for the shot-on-goal bonus, and he has five multi-point games in the last 10. Aliaksei Protas playing on that top line brings the price down a good bit and makes for a great value play in his own right as a one-off. All three forwards fully correlate on the top power play as well. The Blackhawks have been a defensive liability, giving up 3.2 goals and 33.71 shots per game. Look for Ovechkin to set up in his office at the top of the circle.
Timo Meier (SJ at NYI): DraftKings – $7,000 | FanDuel – $8,400
Meier has been an offensive juggernaut, with three multi-point games in the last four. He has hit the shot-on-goal bonus in six of the last 10 games, and he has always been a high-volume shooter. The Islanders have been known as a very stingy defensive team that does not allow much, but they have dealt with a ton of injuries and illnesses, and their metrics show it as well. They come into tonight ranked 28th in Corsi, 23rd in expected goals against, 31st in scoring chances against and 29th in high-danger chances allowed. The shot-on-goal bonus is within grasp once again tonight.
Carter Verhaeghe (FLA vs. BUF): DraftKings – $4,000 | FanDuel – $4,900
Florida continues to shift lines with Aleksander Barkov sidelined. Verhaeghe saw the majority of ice time on the top line alongside Sam Bennett and Jonathan Huberdeau last game, which in turn raises his stock just playing alongside two gifted offensive players. Verhaeghe is a crafty winger that loves to grind for the dirty goals. Buffalo’s metrics have been regressing back to reality, and they sit in sixth place in the Atlantic Division, only ahead of the Senators and Canadiens. The Sabres are another bottom-10 team in metrics, with a negative-13 goal differential. This game should be lopsided from the opening faceoff, with the amount of talent on the Panthers and their quality of depth.
Cale Makar (COL at MTL): DraftKings – $8,000 | FanDuel – $7,200
The pricing for defensemen has gone through the roof, but their production backs up the price tag. Makar has averaged over 24 minutes of ice time over the last five games, and his production has been just as good. Over the last 10 games Makar has 14 points while averaging 4.5 shots/blocks per game. He gets the coveted quarterback role on the Avalanche’s elite power play, creating access to Nathan MacKinnon, Mikko Rantanen and Gabriel Landeskog. It is next to impossible to power-play stack the Avalanche, but getting to Makar as a one-off is a great idea. Montreal has struggled a ton this year trying to find line chemistry. Their metrics have been equally as bad as well. Plus, the Canadiens are allowing the third-most fantasy points per game to opposing defenseman.
Miro Heiskanen (DAL vs. CBJ): DraftKings – $5,900 | FanDuel – $6,200
Heiskanen has been a great source of production from the Stars blue line. He is playing over 23 minutes a night, while averaging over four shots/blocks per game. He will also quarterback the second power play. The Stars second power play of Jamie Benn, Tyler Seguin and Denis Gurianov have been ridiculously efficient offensively, creating over 55 shots per 60 and over eight expected goals. Getting exposure to the Dallas Stars is a good priority for me tonight.
Justus Annunen (COL at MTL): DraftKings – $6,500
Annunen was called up after Darcy Kuemper was a late scratch last night. Jonas Johansson gave up eight goals to the Maple Leafs last night, so there is a real possibility that Annunen will get the nod. It would be his NHL debut, but the matchup does not get much better, and with his minimum price tag he is a cash lock. The shot volume may not be there for a massive ceiling for tournaments, but at that price it helps build more robust lineups.
Top NHL DFS Stacks
DAL 1 – Roope Hintz – Jason Robertson – Joe Pavelski
Top 2 Stack: 7.5%
Ownership Share: 13.2%
Leverage Score: -5.7%
The Dallas top line figures to carry a decent amount of ownership, with a 57.30% Corsi, 3.06 expected goals per 60, 37 scoring chances and over 18 high-danger chances. The Blue Jackets have been very giving on the defensive end, and they will have their hands full tonight. Columbus ranks in the bottom five of every single defensive metric at five-on-five for the season. Finally, although their penalty kill has been middling, they rank 26th in expected goals against short-handed.
COL 1 – Gabriel Landeskog – Nathan MacKinnon – Mikko Rantanen
Top 2 Stack: 26%
Ownership Share: 9%
Leverage Score: 15%
Colorado carries Awesemo’s top leverage play of the night. Carrying a massive price tag of $24,200, they are the best leverage because it is difficult to stack other lines with them. It is best to stack the entire line because people will usually stack two or use one of them as a one-off. The Avalanche top line is one of the best lines in hockey ,and they get a dream matchup tonight on the second of a back-to-back. Montreal is dealing with a ton of COVID issues and just put Brendan Gallagher and Sami Niku in protocol this morning. There could be more to come as well. Montreal has given up 85 goals against this year in only 24 games played. With all the COVID issues hitting them, it is only going to make matters worse. Even on the second of a back-to-back, the Avalanche could not get much better of a matchup.
*Additional Data from Natural Stat Trick.
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Initial NHL DFS ownership projections DraftKings for main slates will be posted daily by 4 p.m. The NHL daily fantasy sports rankings for fantasy points and value are derived directly from Alex's own best DFS NHL projections. Find more DraftKings DFS NHL and DFS NHL lineups as well as the best NHL DFS predictions. The best DFS NHL projections model was created and is maintained by Alex Baker and Jake Hari.
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