4 NHL FanDuel Studs to Target on 1/22/21

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.

Friday night is a busy one with eight contests. Let's take a look at what studs we may find.

Jack Eichel, Center, Buffalo Sabres

FanDuel Salary: $7,600

While most are focused on Nathan MacKinnon and his meeting against the Anaheim Ducks, there is Jack Eichel, who has six assists but no goals on the season. That is in spite of 11 shots and nine scoring chances. The Buffalo Sabres take on a depleted Washington Capitals team that will not have Alex Ovechkin, Ilya Samsonov, Evgeny Kuznetsov and Dmitry Orlov. That will be a huge chunk of Washington's offense missing, which will impact the Caps' defense.

Eichel playing with Taylor Hall is quite the match -- especially on the man advantage. Washington will likely be struggling to keep up with the Buffalo top line in all phases. Also, Washington will be without these players for four games, and the first one typically has more impact (see: the New Jersey Devils without Mackenzie Blackwood last night).

Artemi Panarin, Wing, New York Rangers

FanDuel Salary: $8,200

Artemi Panarin draws an incredible matchup against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Pittsburgh is without three of their defensemen and has already allowed 18 goals in just four games. The New York Rangers are capable of scoring goals and should generate a lot of shots. They average nearly 20 scoring chances per game along with 35.3 shots per contest. Panarin could generate several scoring chances with ease, especially if the Panarin line is matched against the Evgeni Malkin line.

The Rangers should again have ample opportunities on the man advantage against an undisciplined Pens team. This game is expected to be a more wide-open affair. Could Panarin have a multiple real-world point night? That is absolutely a possibility. Pittsburgh has a penalty kill that ranks just 22nd and goaltending that is well below average when it comes to goals saved above average.

Shea Theodore, Defenseman, Vegas Golden Knights

FanDuel Salary: $6,200

As the top end of defender, we can flip between Shea Theodore and Alex Pietrangelo against an Arizona Coyotes team that has shown it cannot slow down the Vegas Golden Knights' offense from the blueline. Theodore has racked up 16 shots on goal and 11 scoring chances already. The Coyotes have displayed an ability to allow a ton of unblocked shot attempts from the point without Oliver Ekman-Larsson in the lineup.

Theodore will be a popular choice tonight, but with seven other games on the slate, his roster percentage may be a little lower than usual. Looking around Friday's night's schedule, even Kris Letang and Miro Heiskanen could be viable alternatives. Theodore is the top choice based on floor and point potential.

Philipp Grubauer, Goalie, Colorado Avalanche

FanDuel Salary: $8,500

The Colorado Avalanche goaltender is expected to start Friday night against an Anaheim Ducks team that struggles to score goals (1.5 goals per game) and can barely muster 24 shots a night. Also, Anaheim has not scored a single goal yet on the man advantage (one of only three teams to do so) and their shooting percentage is just 6.3% (29th in the NHL).

Colorado did just play last night in Los Angeles. After blowing a 2-0 lead, they will not be a happy bunch, but on a back-to-back, the Avalanche may give up a few more shots than usual, which is good for Grubauer's save volume. Colorado's backstop has faced only 46 shots over his last two starts, both of which were wins.

The Dallas Stars' Anton Khudobin ($7,900) is a possible high-salaried alternative.

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.