This article is part of our DraftKings NHL series.
We are nearing the end of February, which means we are also nearing the trade deadline. On Saturday night there are eight games starting at 7 p.m. ET or later. Where should you be looking for your DFS lineups? Here are some options I like.
The Canadiens are hosting the Senators in a battle of two teams on the second leg of a back-to-back. Carolina is at home on a back-to-back, but it is facing the Ducks, the NHL's worst team. The Avalanche are also at home on the second day of a back-to-back, while the Flyers are in New Jersey in such a situation. That's the matchup of these four to really focus on, I reckon.
Frederik Andersen, CAR vs. ANA ($8,500): Like I said, not a matchup to worry about for the Hurricanes, even on the second day of a back-to-back. Anaheim is last in goals per game at 2.47, and also last in GAA at 4.15. At home, Andersen should be a good bet to get a win, even in a back-to-back scenario.
Vitek Vanecek, NJD vs. PHI ($8,400): This is the matchup that stood out to me. The Flyers like I just noted, are on the second leg of a back-to-back. They are rebuilding, looking a little dodgy, and in the bottom six in goals per game. Vanecek has a .913 save percentage, but a 2.37 GAA because the Devils have allowed a mere 28.4 shots on net per contest.
Kaapo Kahkonen, SAN vs. CHI ($8,000): Kahkonen is a bet on matchup. The Blackhawks have averaged 2.49 goals and 26.9 shots on net per contest, both of which rank 31st in the NHL. Seems like as good as it can get for a goalie like Kahkonen, so why not take a shot?
Patrice Bergeron, BOS at VAN ($6,600): He may be in his age-37 season, but Bergeron has not eased off the throttle. The center has 21 goals and 22 assists, with seven of each of those coming on the power play. Key to me is Bergeron centering the top power-play unit, as the Canucks have the league's worst penalty kill.
Drake Batherson, OTT at MON ($5,700): We have two teams on the second leg of a back-to-back here. The Canadiens, though, are in the bottom five in shots on net allowed per contest. Oh, and Sam Montembeault is expected in goal, and he has a 3.24 GAA and .908 save percentage. I'll grab Batherson under these circumstances, as he's tallied 47 points in 57 games, including 22 with the extra man.
Seth Jarvis, CAR vs. ANA ($4,500): Jarvis has been spamming the net with shots, tallying 23 shots on goal in his last seven outings. The Ducks have a 4.15 GAA, but they have also allowed a whopping 39.6 shots on net per contest. That's a ton of shots, and that plays into Jarvis' recent run of activity.
FORWARD LINE STACKS
Devils vs. Flyers
I mentioned the Flyers are on the road for the second leg of a back-to-back. Their goalie behind Carter Hart is Samuel Ersson, a 23-year-old rookie with nine NHL games to his name. He has a .913 save percentage in those games, but a fifth-round pick who can't unseat Hart has a lot left to prove. I'm not sweating Ersson when it comes to New Jersey's top line.
Hischier is actually Bergeron-esque, as he's an elite defensive center who can also contribute offensively. The Swiss pivot has potted 24 goals on 181 shots on net in 57 games. Mercer has a five-game goal streak going, giving him 18 goals in 58 games. He surprised as a rookie with 17 goals, but he's clearly taken a step forward and is currently red hot, befitting a Devil. Tatar brings the veteran presence on this line. He has 33 points in 58 games, and he was recently moved up to the top line. In his last game, he played 19:27 and picked up a goal and an assist.
Sharks vs. Blackhawks
The top line for the Sharks is looking a little odd right now. However, I also see it as being a line rife with opportunity for DFS players. That's especially true in this matchup. The Blackhawks rank 26th in both GAA and shots on net allowed per contest.
Couture is the proven commodity here. He has 20 goals and 28 assists, and 14 of his points have come with the extra man. Chicago, on top of its other defensive woes, is fighting to stay out of the bottom 10 in penalty-kill percentage. Barabanov has turned his puck luck around. Over his last nine games he has five goals (plus four assists), but the Russian still has an 11.3 shooting percentage. Eyssimont has a point in each of his last two games, but what stands out to me more is how active he's been. Over his last 10 contests he's put 37 shots on net.
Miro Heiskanen, DAL at VGK ($6,200): Heiskanen has averaged a hefty 25:30 in ice time, including 3:03 per game with the extra man. That's part of why he has already set a career high with 42 points. Adin Hill returned to practice, so maybe he starts in this one. Even if he does, Hill has a career .908 save percentage.
Hampus Lindholm, BOS at VAN ($5,200): Lindholm isn't getting as much power-play time with Charlie McAvoy healthy, but his production hasn't slowed down. He has nine points over his last 12 games. The Canucks have the league's worst penalty kill, but that's not the only reason why they have a 3.98 GAA.
Mike Matheson, MON vs. OTT ($4,800): Staying healthy has been the only issue for Matheson. The Canadiens give him a ton of minutes, including on the power play, and he's responded with 15 points in 24 games. Cam Talbot is back, but Mads Sogaard is still the backup goalie for the Senators. He's only played in six NHL games in his career, but has a .905 save percentage in those games.