The NHL made a list, which is to say a schedule. On the ice, players are checking more than twice. Nine teams are coming to various towns Tuesday, giving us nine games on the docket. Here are some players to target, and to avoid, for your DFS lineups. And no, I am not sure why I went with a Christmas-infused intro this far from the holiday. Sometimes you just lean into it.
Anti RaantaCAR at ANA ($29): With Fredrik Andersen hurt, the goaltending in Carolina has been an issue. However, Raanta still has a 2.62 GAA because his team has allowed a mere 26.4 shots on net per game. The Ducks averaged 2.42 goals per contest, 31st in the NHL. Maybe this is a game where Raanta allows two goals on 20 shots faced or something, but that’s only two goals, and it will likely be in a win.
GOALIE TO AVOID
Matt MurrayTOR at DAL ($30): Murray has rebounded after a couple of rough seasons with Ottawa to the tune of a .921 save percentage, but it’s only been eight games. This trip to Dallas is going to really test Murray’s mettle. The Stars have averaged 3.92 goals per game, second most in the league.
Matty BeniersSEA vs. MON ($20): Beniers is the frontrunner for the Calder thanks to 21 points in 24 games. Sure, his 20.8 percent shooting will likely regress, but he’s been scorching recently with 12 points in his last seven games. The Canadiens are below average across the board defensively, and are also on the road for the second leg of a back-to-back.
CENTER TO AVOID
Dylan LarkinDET at TAM ($26): Larkin is performing even better than last season, when he had 69 points in 71 games, but this matchup is tricky. For a bit there Andrei Vasilevsky was not looking like his usual self, but it seems like he’s turning things around. Over his last seven outings he has a 2.29 GAA and .925 save percentage.
Seth JarvisCAR at ANA ($17): Jarvis’ sophomore season got off to a slow start, but he has an active five-game point streak with a great chance of turning it into six. The Ducks aren’t just bad offensively. They have a league-high 4.19 GAA.
Oliver Wahlstrom, NYI vs STL ($12): Wahlstrom has started a staggering 80.4 percent of his shifts in the offensive zone, second to Matthew Barzal, his center on the Islanders’ first line. Wahlstrom isn’t exactly crushing it, but he does have six goals and six assists through 25 games. He’s capable, which is more than I expect from the blues on the road for the second night of a back-to-back. Thomas Greiss will likely be in net, and he has a 3.57 GAA and .907 save percentage.
WINGS TO AVOID
Vladimir TarasenkoSTL at NYI ($20): Eternally on the trading block but forever remaining in a Blues uniform, Tarasenko produces plenty, as he is effectively a lock to hit 30 goals if he plays enough games. I just don’t see him scoring in this one. In addition to St. Louis being on the second leg of a back-to-back, his countryman Ilya Sorokin has a 2.17 GAA and .932 save percentage.
Patrick KaneCHI at NJD ($19): While Kane’s 5.3 percent shooting should improve, he has not exactly been an ace shooter the last few years, as he has an 8.1 percent mark over the last three campaigns. That means he needs quantity to fuel his production, and that’s not in the cards in this matchup. The Devils only allow 26.5 shots on net per game, a big reason why they have a 2.28 GAA.
Thomas ChabotOTT vs. LOS ($19): After missing five games, Chabot has notched six points in his last five outings. Staying hot shouldn’t be too daunting with the Kings in town. Jonathan Quick has a 3.33 GAA and an .888 save percentage, and the Kings have the 26th-ranked penalty kill as well.
Jeff PetryPIT vs. CLM ($19): Petry has stepped into a sizable role with Kris Letang out indefinitely, having averaged 23:43 in ice time including 3:39 with the extra man over his last six games. He also has three assists in those six outings. Time on the ice tends to pay off against the Blue Jacketswho have a 3.96 GAA and have allowed 36.3 shots on net per contest.
DEFENSEMENT TO AVOID
Brandon MontorFLA at WPG ($21): The Panthers have three hot defensemen right now, but Montour is the least hot of the three, so he’s the one I am most concerned about on the road against the Jets. Connor Hellebuyck has a 2.27 GAA and .931 save percentage. Also, the Jets have a top-three penalty kill, and Montour has averaged 4:31 per game on the power play.
JustinFaukSTL at NYI ($15): Faulk is shooting at a 6.3 percent clip, and he shoots plenty, but his numbers are buoyed by a scorching start to the season that has gone by the wayside. Over his last 22 games, Faulk only has one goal. Being on the road for the second leg of a back-to-back and facing a goalie with a .932 save percentage likely won’t unlock his production.