3 NHL FanDuel Studs to Target on 8/14/20

Elias Pettersson is on a roll, and could keep it up against the struggling Blues. Who else looks good for Friday?

Spending up in any daily fantasy lineup is how to get the superstars and the highest upside players in your lineup. In NHL DFS, it’s different from 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.

We've got an extra game on this slate, so it's a five-game Friday as opposed to the four we have seen in the first round of the playoffs. What stars are we gonna want to spend up for today?

Elias Pettersson, Center, Vancouver Canucks

FanDuel Salary: $6,700

While Nathan MacKinnon is head and shoulders above every other center on this slate, Elias Pettersson stands out as the best play amidst a large chunk of the other expensive centers in his price range. The reigning rookie of the year had the second-most goals and points in the regular season of any center on this slate, but is priced as the sixth most expensive center. He scored a power-play goal in the Vancouver Canucks' Game 1 victory and now has points in four straight games. The Swede was no stranger to taking advantage on the power play, as he had the seventh-most power-play points for centers, per NHL.com.

The St. Louis Blues won the Stanley Cup last season based on the strength of their defense, but that hasn't been the case since the restart. The Blues have allowed 4.33 goals per 60 minutes in this postseason, the most in the league according to Natural Stat Trick. They've also been bad on the penalty kill, killing off just 72.7% of their shorthanded situations. The Canucks have been good on the power play, clicking at 28%. Pettersson's two goals in the postseason have been on the power play. He's a great play who is arguably underpriced on this slate.

Mikko Rantanen, Wing, Colorado Avalanche

FanDuel Salary: $7,800

Mikko Rantanen had many injury problems throughout the season but still produced 41 points in 42 games. This was a tick down from his scoring rate in 2018-19, when he averaged 1.18 points per game. He's been playing well in the bubble, with five points in four games and 13 shots on goal. He plays on the Colorado Avalanche's top line with Nathan MacKinnon, so he'll always be in a good position to put up points.

The Avalanche have looked like one of the best teams since the league started up again. They have the highest implied goal total on the Friday slate, sitting at around 3.3 according to our daily fantasy matchup heat map. They'll face the Arizona Coyotes, a team that has allowed the most shots on goal per 60 minutes in the postseason, allowing five more than the second-worst team. Rantanen has the upside to use in tournaments and can be stacked with other Avalanche teammates.

John Carlson, Defense, Washington Capitals

FanDuel Salary: $6,800

John Carlson returned to action in Game 1 and got two assists. That was nothing new for him this season, as he was fourth in the league with 60 assists and led all defensemen in points with 75, which was good for the 12th most in the NHL. He also was a horse that the Washington Capitals rode a ton, as he was tenth in the league in average time on ice per game. Carlson was just overall a stud this season and could continue that into the playoffs.

The Capitals are down 1-0 in this series to the New York Islanders, but that could change in Game Two. Washington is favored to even up the series, and has an implied goal total that is close to three. A good matchup for Carlson comes with the man advantage, where the Isles have struggled since the league resumed. Both of Carlson's assists came on the power play, where he quarterbacks the attack for the Caps. He'll set up shots for Alex Ovechkin, giving him a great chance to get more assists. Carlson has the highest upside of any defenseman, and numberFire's projections have him as the second-highest scoring blueliner on the slate.

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.