In daily fantasy hockey, stacking is a key strategy in tournaments. We want to correlate our lineups with up to four players to maximize our upside -- if one player on a line is scoring goals, it's likely that his linemates are getting assists, as well.
Ideally, we want players who will get a lot of ice time together on an even-strength line and a power-play line. Two good resources for line combinations are LeftWingLock.com and DailyFaceoff.com, so be sure to check those sites for updated line information.
It's a light Wednesday, but we've still got four interesting games with teams we can stack.
Toronto Maple Leafs
The Toronto Maple Leafs had a disappointing loss on Monday when they were also a stacking target. Some of their better players had good fantasy games, though, which is the most important thing for our purposes.
It looks like Auston Matthews ($10,200) is starting to find last season's goal-scoring form. He has goals in three straight games and also has three assists and 17 shots on goal during those three contests. He's playing with Mitchell Marner ($8,100) at even strength and on the power play. Marner has also been playing well lately, with eight points over his last three games. Calle Jarnkrok ($4,800) is now playing on the top line with these guys and scored a goal last game after being moved up to play with them.
You can look at the Leafs' second line, as well, as it has dangerous players on it. William Nylander ($8,800) scored his 35th goal of the season on Monday, extending his team lead. John Tavares ($8,200) is third on the team with 30 goals and plays with Nylander on the first power play. Michael Bunting ($5,500) is the third member of this line, and he has been a solid contributor with 20 goals this season.
Toronto will play the Colorado Avalanche at home. Colorado is not the easiest matchup for them, but the Avs allowed four goals on Monday to a Montreal Canadiens team that is missing several key players. They also are just an average team in terms of shots allowed per game, ranking 15th in that stat.
The Leafs are favored in this game and have the highest implied team total on tonight's slate.
The Buffalo Sabres are desperately trying to hang around and make the playoffs for the first time in 12 years. They had a big win on Monday to keep them in the hunt, and they need to keep it going with a win tonight.
The Sabres' first line was one of the best in the league to end last season, and that's carried over to this year. They've scored the second-most goals when playing together at five-on-five. Tage Thompson ($9,800) leads the way with 42 goals. He's in a slight goal drought but has four assists across his last three games. Alex Tuch ($7,800) returned to the lineup on Monday with two goals, bringing him up to 30 this season despite missing a few weeks due to injury. Jeff Skinner ($7,500) is second on the team with 67 points and will play with these two linemates on Buffalo's first power play.
Buffalo will face the Washington Capitals tonight. Washington has fallen out of playoff contention and decided to sell off players at the trade deadline. They played last night and allowed five goals, and the Caps now have to return home, possibly without Alex Ovechkin for the second straight game.
It's a bit surprising that the Sabres are underdogs in this game, with Washington having played poorly and playing on a back-to-back with the status of their best player up in the air. Buffalo's first line has been good as underdogs before, so we can take a shot on them tonight.
New York Islanders
The New York Islanders are currently holding on to the last playoff spot in the East. They aren't a team we like to target very often. They are only 24th in goals per game, but the matchup is right for them tonight.
The Islanders are still without Mathew Barzal and are trying to settle on their lines. Right now, they have Bo Horvat ($7,800) playing with Anders Lee ($6,300) and Josh Bailey ($3,600) on the top line. Horvat and Lee are two of their top three goal-scorers, and they play together on the first power play. Noah Dobson ($6,300) is tied for the team lead in power-play goals, so he can also be used in this stack.
The Isles get the matchup we always love to target, as they face the Anaheim Ducks. Anaheim is still on pace to be the worst defensive team we've seen in the salary-cap era when looking at either shots allowed and goals against per game.
The total for this game is only 5.5, which may make fantasy players shy away from the Islanders. But New York has a higher implied team total than Colorado does and will likely be way less popular.
Nicholas Vazquez is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Nicholas Vazquez also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username hbyanksman. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his/her personal views, he/she may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his/her personal account. The views expressed in his/her articles are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.