Just because the regular season is over in the NHL that doesn’t mean the hockey DFS is over until the fall. There is lots of opportunities to grow our bankroll in the playoffs. I am going to go series by series and break down matchups I like on each team and tell you who I think is going to win each series and how long I think the series is going to last.
Today I will focus on the five series starting on Thursday. I got some positive feedback from my article yesterday so I am going to keep the same format as yesterday.
New Jersey Devils at Tampa Bay Lightning
Tampa Bay leads the NHL in goal differential with a plus 60. While the Devils are last among playoff teams with a plus 4. The Lightning leads the league in goals for. This could end up being a situation where the Devils end up being happy to have made the playoffs. Prediction Lighting in 4.
Tampa Bay Lightning
The Devils allowed the second most goals among playoff teams. I like the top two lines for the Lighting in this series.
Alex Killorn is going to be a sneaky play for the Lightning. He plays on the top power-play unit for the Lighting. Look to stack the Lighting’s top line Stamkos, Miller, Kucherov when they are at home. Stack their second line on the road Palat, Point, Johnson.
Defense if you are able to find a way to fit Victor Hedman in your lineups he should be productive as well.
New Jersey Devils
Taylor Hall had a season that might end up winning him the Heart Trophy. Any success the Devils have he is going to have to be scoring. Hall is likely going to be contrarian in GPPs.
Toronto Maple Leafs at Boston Bruins
A lot of people in Canada are predicting the Leafs upset the Bruins. I think most of them are predicting with their heart and not their brain. The Bruins were one of the best teams in the league from December on. Many were predicting a Stanley Cup win for the Bruins only a couple of weeks ago. The Leafs do have balanced scoring. The Bruins have maybe the best line in the league, scoring depth, their defense is better than the Leafs and their goaltending is better than the Leafs. The Bruins power play ranked 4th in the NHL and their penalty killing ranked 3rd. The Leafs PP 2nd ranked and their PK ranked 11th giving the Bruins a slight edge on special teams as well. Prediction Bruins in 6 games.
The Bruins have maybe the top line in the NHL. I expect them to be really chalky. Bergeron, Marchant, and Pastrnak. I also expect them to have lots of success, especially at home. Their second line will be the lower owned contrarian pick for GPPs especially on the road. Mike Babcock the Leafs coach is a matchup and will make sure that he has is best defensive players on the ice against the Bruins top line especially at home. Look for the Bruins second line of Nash, Krejci, and Debrusk to be in some great plus matchups.
Defense, if you have been reading all season long you know how I like to pick on the Leafs by using defensemen. Troy Krug is a great option in this series.
Toronto Maple Leafs
I don’t like to use the Leafs in DFS. Not because they don’t score often but because they balance their lines to get scoring from all of their lines. The safest way to find scoring by using the Leafs in DFS is usually to stack their power play but the Bruins have very penalty killing. The Leafs are a GPP play, I would stack their power play. Bozak, Kadri, Marner, JVR and Morgan Rielly and hope for the best.
Columbus Blue Jackets at Washington Capitals
Even though the Capitals won their division they finished the season only 8 points ahead of the Blue Jackets. The Caps have struggled with their goaltending and the Blue Jackets have been getting some of the best goaltending in the NHL. The Caps have one of the best power plays in the NHL ranked 9th while the Blue Jackets have one of the worst power plays in the NHL ranked 28th. Columbus has yet to win a playoff series in their history. Washington has yet to live up to their playoff potential. This is a tough series for me to predict and it is going to be a close one. Prediction Caps in 7.
I predicted this series to go 7 games and I would play the Caps when they are at home. The Blue Jackets allowed 2.37 goals per game at home and 3.15 goals a game on the road. That is a huge difference.
Both play on the Caps top line and their power play.
Columbus Blue Jackets
When it comes to the Blue Jackets I would do the same with them as I recommend with the Caps. Play the Jackets at home. The Caps really struggled on the road allowing 3.29 goals a game.
Artemi Panarin ended the regular season hot and if CBJ is going to win this series he is going to need to stay hot.
Cam Atkinson has been also been hot and should be on a line with Panarin.
Seth Jones seems to be living up to expectations the second half of the year.
Colorado Avalanche at Nashville Predators
Nashville is possibly the deepest team at two of the positions Stanley Cup champions are usually deep at, center and defense. They were second in the NHL in goal differential. The Avalanche had a surprise season making the playoffs. They have one very good scoring line but the scoring drops off after that. Prediction Preds in 4.
The Preds get scoring from all over their lineup.
I really like to use their second line wingers
Defense there isn’t a deeper or more talented defense core than what the Preds have.
PK Subban is usually is a great position to have the biggest nights because he is on the top power-play unit.
For the Avs to have success in this series Nathan Mackinnon is going to need to score and score a lot. Just stacking their top line is going to be contrarian.
Anaheim Ducks at San Jose Sharks
This is a series between two teams that are filled with veterans that have lots of playoff experience. It is likely going to be a long one. The Sharks are the team with the deeper lineup at forward and defense. Prediction Sharks in 7
San Jose Sharks
This is going to be a close series. The Sharks best fantasy player is Brett Burns.
Evander Kane got an early start to the baseball season and is leading the Cy Young 8-0 with 8 goals and 0 assists in his last 10 games. He may turn out to be the best trade deadline move in the NHL adding a much needed pure goal scorer.
The Ducks don’t have the scoring depth that the Sharks have and are going to need to get goals from their top line to win this series. Rickard Rakell had a career season in goals and points.
I think the Ducks third line can be sneaky. The Ducks are going to win games in this series and I can see a Ducks third line stack winning someone a GPP.
No Cam Fowler for the Ducks moves Brandon Montour to the Ducks top power-play unit and provides us with a value play with some upside.