Written by Thomas Buckley - DF Insider on November 18, 2017

Before we get into this slate, it needs to be said how explosive and exciting it might actually be. There is going to be so much talent on the ice, and there will be plenty of different directions that we can go, but we wanted to write up some of our Value Plays for this slate. As always, plug in our Must-Haves and build your lineups around those players. And join us in the War Room as we discuss lineup construction and and answer your questions about tonight’s slate.

FORWARDS

Mathew Barzal (DK: $5,000 FD: $5,100): The Islanders certainly have a tough matchup against the first place Lightning tonight, but the Isles might be one of the few teams right now that can actually keep up. New York has been one of the better offensive teams as of late, and pretty much the whole season. They are currently second in the NHL in scoring, with 3.61 goals per game, and the oh-so-important power play has finally looked like one after a horrific 2-for-23 start.

One of the main reasons for that has been rookie Center Mathew Barzal. During the offseason, Barzal was in the center of trade talks for the Islanders as they were looking for a true winger to finally pair with John Tavares. But luckily for them, Garth Snow was smart enough to not pull the trigger on any deal, and it has truly paid off. If you’ve watched any Islanders game, it’s clear that Barzal is a top talent and may in fact be the second best player on the team already, and he’s certainly showing it. Barzal has 14 points in his last ten games (3G/11A), and has really been a game changer for this Isles team. And what comes with good play? More ice time. Coach Weight has increased Barzal’s ice time recently, averaging just over 16 minutes per game, which has been second among forwards over the last ten games. And what else comes with more ice time? More opportunities. And when we’re talking about Value Plays, that’s what we want.

As for the matchup tonight, the Isles face off against a high powered Lightning team, who have actually been one of the better defensive teams, but Barzal seems to be in a good spot no matter who he’s playing against lately. You may look at some of Barzal’s stats like his shots (37) and shooting percentage (10.8) and think, “why would I want someone who’s not a good shooter?” But then you watch him play, and notice that he is in constant control of the puck, and is always in the opponent’s zone looking to make things happen. His ownership should be low against Tampa, and could be really beneficial as a one-off.

 

 

Artem Anisimov (DK: $5,200 FD: $5,500): Of course we have to pick a guy coming off a hat trick, right? Yes, yes we do. However, Anisimov has been much more than just a one game wonder lately. As a matter of fact, he’s averaged 4.5 fantasy points on DK, and 16.03 fantasy points on FD respectfully over his last ten games, so the production has definitely been there, and it’s caught our eye. And it certainly doesn’t hurt that he plays alongside Patrick Kane, one of the best that the NHL has to offer. Kane is actually one of the main reasons as to why we are picking Anisimov tonight, because Kane has dominated the Penguins every time out. Kane has 16 career points against Pittsburgh, and 12 of those points have been assists, so that certainly bodes well for Anisimov. Another reason why Anisimov is one of our value plays is because the Penguins are a minus-15 in goal differential, and are only second to Arizona (82) in goals given up at 72.

 

 

DEFENSE

 

P.K. Subban (DK: $4,900 FD: $5,400): This value pick was actually picked out by our fearless leader James Ladalia, and we of course all agreed in unison. We were shocked to see someone of Subban’s capabilities have such a low price tag, but it’s somewhat understandable based on his production lately. Subban has only produced five points over his last ten games, but we think he’s in an excellent spot tonight. Subban has always been a “live on the edge” type player, and is certainly never afraid to make a big play, which is exactly what you need sometimes in DFS, especially with someone who averages 25 minutes of ice-time. Subban and the Predators are taking on an Avalanche team that ranks 26th in goals against at 3.35 per game, and 23rd in penalty kill, which will certainly benefit the man who runs the point of Nashville’s first power play unit. Not to mention that coach Peter Laviolette just added Viktor Arvidsson back to that top unit, so that could potentially leave even more room for Subban up-top.

 

Jaccob Slavin (DK: $4,000 FD: $4,100): We could pretty much copy and paste Subban’s write up and put it right here for Slavin. The Carolina defenseman has also hit a bit of a snag here of late, but that doesn’t mean we should forget about him. Like Subban, Slavin is in an excellent spot tonight, and with his salary being so low, he could be a perfect fit for your lineup. His ownership is projected to be rather low, which is always good for GPPs, but he’s also going to give you salary relief at the same time. And we all know, especially with a slate like tonight, that is a major key. The Hurricanes are facing a Sabres team that has given up the third most goals per game, and are on a back-to-back. Slavin is a very good puck handler, and is one of the few defenseman that can consistently carry the puck into the opponent’s zone, which is very important for a DFS defenseman because it immediately opens up opportunities. He also man’s the point on their power play unit, so that’s an added bonus, which certainly adds value to this play.

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