NHL Daily Fantasy Hockey DFS Plays and Goalie Rankings – 3/18



If you’re a daily fantasy sports player you know there are few things more important than finding good value plays to compliment the higher priced guys. There’s usually no way you’ll finish in the money without a couple of low-salary guys producing above their salary.

Each day I’ll bring you a rundown of some players you may want to use in your daily leagues. They will include a few top plays (high salaried players a notch below the obvious choices – Crosby, Ovechkin, Neal, etc.), some mid level plays, and a good amount of the most important ones – value plays (players most likely to outperform their salary).

While I’ll feature different DFS sites as a guide for salaries each day, you’ll find that most sites will have the individual players on a similar salary scale.

I’ll post my lineup for each site/day so you can get an idea of how I’m building my team(s).

I will also include overall goalie rankings for today’s games at the bottom of each post. The rankings are not based on salary, but just as an idea of how I feel each goalie will do compared to the other starters for the night.

Please note that with daily hockey there is constantly new information to consider. New line combos, late changes to starting goalies, healthy scratches, etc., are an everyday occurrence.  Check back often for any updates.

Salaries and plays used today are from Fan Throwdown.

On Fan Throwdown blocked shots are counted and they are each good for a full point. That being the case, grabbing defensemen that can both score and block a good number of shots is key. I usually spend a good chunk of my cap on FTD on those types of d-men if I can find good value elsewhere.

On sites that don’t count blocks, a few adjustments to this lineup will be made (basically less $$ on the d-men and more on a top player or two), but the value plays will be similar.

Tonight’s games:

Boston at New Jersey – 7 PM ET
Carolina at Columbus – 7 PM ET
Dallas at Pittsburgh – 7 PM ET
Minnesota at NY Islanders – 7 PM ET
Toronto at Detroit – 7:30 PM ET
Chicago at Philadelphia – 7:30 PM ET
Colorado at Montreal – 7:30 PM ET
NY Rangers at Ottawa – 7:30 PM ET
Buffalo at Calgary – 9 PM ET
Nashville at Edmonton – 9:30 PM ET
Washington at Anaheim – 10 PM ET
Florida at San Jose – 10:30 PM ET


Top Plays

D Shea Weber – NSH ($15,300) – With 16 goals, 43 points (23 of those on the PP) and 143 blocked shots, Weber is exactly the type of player you want with this type of scoring system. How valuable is he? Well, he’s the second highest salaried player on the site, $700 behind Ovechkin. That places him above players like Crosby, Seguin, Benn, Kessel, etc. There are other d-men that can fill the stat sheet, but Weber is almost a lock to get you four to five points. 

D Dion Phaneuf – TOR ($11,700) – A step below Weber but still has 29 points and 131 blocked shots (and 123 SOG) so he can easily build up your points.

D Andy MacDonald – PHI ($11,200) – Hard to pass up the league’s leading shot blocker (209) on a site that counts blocked shots. He can get you three points on blocks alone before getting into any other potential contributions. He’ll also score occasionally as he has 25 points this season and has a better shot at putting up a few more now that he’s in Philly. On FTD, plus/minus isn’t counted, so even though he has a tough matchup and sports an ugly -20 on the season, that’s not an issue here.


Mid Level Plays

G Antti Niemi SJS ($12,800)  – Niemi makes for a good play at home against Florida. He comes off a shutout in his most recent game, and he’s facing one of the worst offensive teams in the league. You could pay less for a couple of other goalies but there’s likely no better shot at getting a W than with Niemi tonight.

LW Bobby Ryan – OTT ($9,000) – My highest salaried forward on FTD today is Ryan. He hasn’t had a great season but he’s been better lately with three points in his last four while firing 14 SOG in those games. There are a few other players around this price that could do well tonight but I think Ryan has the best shot at outperforming his salary.


Value Plays

C Joe Thornton – SJS ($8,600) – Jumbo Joe has been undervalued most of the season just because he doesn’t do anything flashy. He has just 10 goals and has shot the puck on goal just 95 times in 69 games. However, he has a total of 65 points and can usually be found on the scoresheet when the Sharks score. They should get their fair share of chances tonight against Florida and the salary is a nice value.

Michael Cammalleri – CGY ($8,500) – Like Thornton, Cammalleri has been undervalued most of the season, but his issue has been injuries. He has played in just 51 games but has 30 points in those games. More importantly, he has been hot lately with four goals and six points (and 13 SOG) in his last four. ..and he faces the Sabres at home. Not a bad gamble on a hot player.

LW Kris Versteeg – CHI ($6,800) – Hard to pass up a player at this salary that is playing on a line with Hossa and Toews. Those two will likely get the majority of scoring opportunities, but the chance of some points coming are good and the chance of outperforming the salary is even better.

RW Lee Stempniak – PIT ($7,200) – Like Versteeg, taking a player at this salary that is playing on a line with stars, in this case Crosby (and Kunitz might return tonight), is a pretty easy choice. He’ll get plenty of ice time and his linemates will get plenty of chances. Again, the opportunity to outperform his salary is pretty good, but you’re not paying a lot even if he doesn’t do too much.

RW Daniel Alfredsson – DET ($8,600) – Alfredsson hasn’t done too much lately, but that’s where you find value. He has just one point in his last seven, but he’s still shooting the puck. He’s still on the top power play unit, and facing a team that gives up the most shots in the league, and has the 3rd worst PK, he should see his fair share of opportunities.


My Fan Throwdown Roster For Tonight

C Joe Thornton $8600
C Michael Cammalleri $8500
LW Kris Versteeg $6800
LW Bobby Ryan $9000
RW Daniel Alfredsson $8600
RW Lee Stempniak $7200
D Shea Weber $15300
D Andrew MacDonald $11200
UTIL Dion Phaneuf $11700
G Antti Niemi $12800

$300 in salary remaining.


Tonight’s Goalie Rankings

Probable / confirmed starters are linked to the source

  1. Antti Niemi
  2. Sergei Bobrovsky
  3. Jonas Hiller
  4. Chad Johnson
  5. Joni Ortio
  6. Jeff Zatkoff
  7. Antti Raanta
  8. Carey Price
  9. Jimmy Howard
  10. Henrik Lundqvist
  11. Kari Lehtonen
  12. Ilya Bryzgalov
  13. Pekka Rinne
  14. Viktor Fasth
  15. Jaroslav Halak
  16. J.S. Giguere
  17. Robin Lehner
  18. James Reimer
  19. Anders Nilsson
  20. Martin Brodeur
  21. Anton Khudobin
  22. Roberto Luongo
  23. Ray Emery
  24. Nathan Lieuwen


Good Luck! As always, if you have any fantasy hockey questions, daily or otherwise, feel free to reach out to me on Twitter.


About This Empire Soldier: Carlos is the NHL Rankings and Content Editor for Dynasty Sports Empire. He has been a hockey fan for as long as he can remember, and has been writing about hockey for over five years. He is the owner / writer / editor for SpeakingoftheDevils.com and has also contributed work for various other hockey websites. He has been playing fantasy sports since the days when you had to pull stats from USA Today the morning after games were played.

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