3 NHL FanDuel Studs to Target on 3/11/20

Spending up in any daily fantasy sport is how to get the superstars and the highest upside players in your lineup. In NHL DFS, it’s different than paying up in sports like NBA or NFL. Someone can be one of the highest-priced players at his position and put up a total dud of a performance, and paying that much for him would be a huge mistake. Let’s make sure we are paying up in the right spots when building our lineups tonight.

Wednesday brings us a five-game slate, with one of the games being a make up game. The first puck drop is at 8 PM Eastern Time, so we have an extra hour from the normal lineup lock time to make our decisions on which stars we want tonight.

Mika Zibanejad, Center, New York Rangers

FanDuel Salary: $8,900

The center position has the potential to be pretty thin at the top tonight, with both Nathan MacKinnon and Connor McDavid both looking like game-time decisions tonight. Luckily, we will have the hottest goal scorer in the league if those two can't go tonight. Mika Zibanejad has just been on fire of late. Everyone saw his five-goal performance last Thursday night, but really that was just an explosion after consistent goal-scoring over a long period of time. He now has 14 goals in his last 10 games, and hit the 40 goal mark in last night's game. He's now tied with Alex Ovechkin for the league lead in goals per game (of players with at least 10 games played) with .71.

Zibanejad and the New York Rangers will face the Colorado Avalanche on Wednesday night. This is not an easy situation for the Rangers on a back to back, but the Avalanche are a banged-up team. If MacKinnon were to miss this game, they will be without their top two centers, their first-line right winger, and number one goalie, according to DailyFaceoff.com. That will be tough to deal with against a Rangers team are now fifth in goals per game in the league. Zibanejad has goals in five straight games, and could make it six tonight. He has 44 shots on goal in his last 10 games, giving him a solid floor to go with his goal-scoring upside.

Kyle Connor, Wing, Winnipeg Jets

FanDuel Salary: $7,500

With their playoff life in the balance, Kyle Connor continues to be a goal-scoring threat for the Winnipeg Jets. They currently are on the outside looking in for the wild card in the Western Conference, so every game from this point forward will be crucial. Connor has done his part to keep them in the race. He has seven goals in the last ten games, which have vaulted him up to 36 on the season. That's tied for the seventh-most in the league. He's also been ramping up his shooting of late, as his 3.8 shots per game in his last ten games are higher than his season average of 3.3.

Connor and the Jets are facing off against the Edmonton Oilers tonight. The Jets are underdogs in this game, but they have a few things going in their favor. The Jets still have a healthy implied goal total, at 2.79 according to our daily fantasy matchup heat map. The Oilers have allowed 3.36 goals per game at home, that's tied for the second-most in the league. Connor will have plenty of opportunities to exploit that weakness of the Oilers, as he plays the third-most minutes for any winger, according to Natural Stat Trick. He makes for a good play in all formats in what could be a high scoring game.

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Wing, Edmonton Oilers

FanDuel Salary: $7,400

With all the attention in Edmonton going to Connor McDavid or Leon Draisaitl, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins has flown under the radar. He is a former first overall pick as well, and this season he has been producing points like it. He has 61 points in 64 games and has been hot of late when playing on a line with Draisaitl and youngster Kailer Yamamoto. He has 16 points in his last 10 games, one more than Draisaitl, who is sitting in first in the NHL in points.

The Oilers will look to get things rolling against a Jets team that has not been good defensively this season. They allow the fifth most expected goals per 60 minutes and the seventh most shots on goal per game. They also are a bottom ten team on the penalty kill, and are facing the Oilers' number one ranked power play. Nugent-Hopkins has five points on the power play in the last ten games, including two assists with the man advantage against these Jets on February 29th. The Oilers have an implied team total of 3.21, the third-highest on the slate. Nugent-Hopkins may go overlooked when considering Edmonton players, but he shouldn't be as he has been lighting up the score sheet of late.

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.