3 NHL FanDuel Studs to Target on 1/21/21

Is Nathan MacKinnon worth targeting at his lofty salary on Thursday's six-game slate?

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.

Thursday night features six contests. Let's take a look at what studs we may find.

Nathan MacKinnon, Center, Colorado Avalanche

FanDuel Salary: $8,900

While most are focused on the Tampa Bay Lightning players and rightfully so, Colorado is less rusty and features a power-play unit that has been excellent. They even cracked the Los Angeles Kings' penalty kill while scoring a couple times. The only concern is that Colorado stopped playing at 3-0 and nearly lost their lead late.

Nathan MacKinnon could not truly be contained by Anze Kopitar and company and it showed. He had five scoring chances and only Cal Petersen foiled him from having a couple goals in their previous meeting. One could see the frustration on MacKinnon's face and when he is mad, the center plays some of his best "downhill hockey". There are some intriguing center studs but MacKinnon and his five real-world points this season top our list tonight.

Brad Marchand, Wing, Boston Bruins

FanDuel Salary: $8,300

This is a high-risk play when it comes to picking studs. There are quite a few available tonight, including Steven Stamkos, but there is this sense that the Boston Bruins could break out a bit tonight. Marchand had five shots on net, four scoring chances, and at least two or three quality opportunities against the New York Islanders, but Semyon Varlamov was a stone wall in net. Boston has a lot of pent up energy and anxiety. The first goal may be an opening of the floodgates. Marchand has been extremely close to scoring as well as setting up other players.

The Philadelphia Flyers are a bit banged-up with several key injuries including Sean Couturier. This may be a game where Boston has a chance to recoup some of their confidence and swagger that had been lost over the first three games.

Jeff Petry, Defenseman, Montreal Canadiens

FanDuel Salary: $5,700

Trying to find top plays on the blueline may turn into safer plays tonight as the Montreal Canadiens and Vancouver Canucks have much to work on defensively. The good thing is that with real-world points, shots, and blocks, Jeff Petry has a solid floor against a deficient and injury-riddled Canucks team. There are a few ways this late game could go, but either way, it helps pad Petry's categories.

Trying to trust goaltending tonight is a little bit of a risk, which is why we opted for a defensive stud. Petry also has a reasonable salary on a lighter slate than usual for a Thursday night. Varlamov is a decent choice against a New Jersey Devils team that usually has trouble with the New York Islanders. Petry's consistency is, arguably, not quite at the stud level, but for tonight, this may be worth the play if one does not want to spend all the way up for Victor Hedman at $7,100.

Chris Wassel is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Chris Wassel also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username chriswassel. 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.