I’d like to welcome you to a new feature here at The Hockey Writers and the fantasy section. Every day, I’ll be taking a look at the daily matchups in the NHL and providing a bit of (what I hope is), helpful information as you head out into the world of fantasy hockey and make your picks.
What To Know
As you navigate your way through the information we provide in these daily hits, there are a few things to remember:
- I’ll be making my selections based on that day’s games.
- I am assuming you are using sites like DraftKings or FanDuel to play your hockey fantasy drafts. In these pools, players are given a daily salary value and you’ll be asked to build your team through not only obvious (and high salaried players), but value picks to round out your team.
- I will look at line combinations, opponents, home vs away records and other things that may affect the results
- I’ll break it up into centers, forwards, defensemen and goaltenders.
At no time, should you use these picks as locks or sure-fire winners. Please use this information and your discretion to help make your own fantasy team decisions. You are welcome to comment on your thoughts of my choices, but I ask that you consider making your own choices according to what you feel is right and I hold no responsibility for any wins/losses financially based on your ultimate decisions.
Toronto at Ottawa
St. Louis at Chicago
Calgary at Edmonton
LA at San Jose
Connor McDavid ($7500-$7600)
McDavid will be playing his first regular season game at Rogers Place as captain of the Edmonton Oilers. McDavid’s first game as captain came in a preseason game where he put on a dominant performance, scoring two goals in a 5-2 win over the Jets. In four games this preseason, McDavid has six points and four goals. Last season he scored 48 points in 45 games as an 18-year-old.
He’ll be matched up against newly signed Johnny Gaudreau, Sean Monahan and Kris Versteeg. It’s the matchup against Versteeg that I think the Oilers first line will exploit. You should be able to get some easy points from McDavid, but he’ll likely come at a higher cost for your team.
Johnny Gaudreau ($6900-$7300)
Despite the fact that I think the Oilers take this game, Johnny Gaudreau is Calgary’s best forward option and comes in at a decent price for a top-flight winger. Edmonton’s defense is improved but it’s still a work in progress and Gaudreau is coming fresh off a contract extension. He could have a big game against Edmonton’s developing defense.
Mike Hoffman ($5500-$5600)
Hoffman is arguably Ottawa’s best forward and he’ll see top line minutes tonight against a Toronto team that will likely still struggle on the road. Hoffman will get plenty of power play time and should score multiple points in tonight’s game. At his price, he’s an obvious choice.
Artemi Panarin ($6900-$7000)
Panarin is a bit more of a gamble as he may not see the top line and isn’t considered a value pick at his price tag, but he is a threat to score and could be used in a few different situations. First unit power play time is a given for the skilled forward coming off of a fantastic rookie season.
Erik Karlsson ($7000-$7900)
Karlsson is a much better buy on FanDuel today than he is on DraftKings, but if you’re going to take one defenseman as your top-overall selection, Karlsson is probably it. He’s playing against a weaker team in Toronto and he’s used in all situations for the Senators.
Brent Burns ($7500-$8200)
Depending on how your team is already rounding out and what league you play in, Burns is pretty much always a reliable pick. Spending your fantasy dollars on Burns isn’t going to hurt your team. He’s an offensive dynamo and plays in a ton of situations including first unit power play.
Craig Anderson ($7900 – $8400)
Choosing a goaltender tonight isn’t a lock, but of all the matchups, it seems that Ottawa has the best chance to get a win and there is a chance that a shutout, while a long-shot, has a better chance here than anywhere else on the card tonight. This isn’t a sure thing by any means as Toronto last season was in the top-ten for shots on goal. Martin Jones could be another good choice here.
Andrej Sekera ($4100-$4600)
At his value, Sekera should be a good selection. He gets a ton of 5-on-5 time in Edmonton and is the lone defenseman to play most of the previous season under coach Todd McLellan’s system. He’s used in first-unit power play situations and is a good shot-blocker.
Jim Parsons is a senior THW freelance writer, part-time journalist and audio/video host who lives, eats, sleeps and breathes NHL news and rumors, while also writing features on the Edmonton Oilers. He’s been a trusted source for five-plus years at The Hockey Writers, but more than that, he’s on a mission to keep readers up to date with the latest NHL rumors and trade talk. Jim is a daily must for readers who want to be “in the know.”