Here in the breakdown we’re going to identify the games with the best fantasy scoring environments for everyday of the NHL season. To do this we’re going to look at teams’ scoring chances for (SCF), scoring chances against (SCA), high danger chances for (HDF), high danger chances against (HDA), power play opportunities (PPO) and power play opportunities against (PPOA). The reason for applying those stats to this particular exercise is because they are the best indicator of a team’s scoring opportunities and we want to identify games with teams that possess the best combination of quality and quantity of scoring opportunities. I’ll also offer some of my favorite individual plays from each game using average time on ice (ATOI), average power play time on ice (PPTOI) and team role. We’ll be looking for players on one of the top two scoring lines and players on one of a team’s power play units.
Tonight is a nice mid-sized seven game slate that offers a few spots to find some nice value.
Arizona Coyotes @ Florida Panthers
Totals: Highest 6.5 DK 6 FD 6.5
The undefeated Panthers play host the the winless Coyotes in what might become a very lopsided contest in the Sunshine State. Panthers are back home after a successful trip to Philadelphia that saw them defeat the Flyers 4-2, extending their streak to five straight games scoring 4 or more goals. Currently Florida’s games average 6.2 goals, 67.4 total shots on goal and 9.6 power plays a game. The Panthers check in high on the scoring chance rankings too, 4th in SCF (124), 23rd in SCA (94), 17th in HDF (32) and 5th in HDA (39). The Coyotes are starting a six game road trip tonight hoping to pick up a win along the way, Arizona has scored 3 or more goals just once in all five of their losses. Averaging 6.4 goals, 57.2 total shots on goal and 5.2 power plays per game, the Coyotes’ contests tend to feature plenty of offensive, for their opponents. Arizona ranks 21st in SCF (99), 26th in SCA (87), 26th in HDF (27) and 30th in HDA (23). Most top the value in this game will be found on the Florida side, I’ll be targeting plenty of the Panthers high end skill players. Aaron Ekblad leads the team in ATOI (25:24) and PPTOI (5:06) and is second on the team in points with 5. Sam Bennett has resurrected his career in Florida and leads the team with 4 goals managing a respectable (18:11) ATOI and (4:43) PPTOI.
Toronto Maple Leafs @ Carolina Hurricanes
Totals: Highest 6.5 DK 6 FD 6.5
Fresh off being humiliated by the the Crosby and Malkin-less Penguins, the Toronto Maple Leafs continue their road trip heading to Carolina to take on the Hurricanes. Toronto has given up 5 or more goals in both of their previous games and bring with them averages of 5.1 goals, a gorgeous 77.2 total shots on goal and 6.6 power plays per game. The Leafs’ dismal shooting percentage 5.9%, which ranks 24th right now, paired with the high shot total average in their games just screams offensive eruption is coming. Toronto also stacks up well in the scoring chance categories, 1st in SCF (163), 4th in SCA (134), 2nd in HDF (44), 9th in HDA (37). The Hurricanes are undefeated and have scored at least 4 goals in three of out of their four games to open the season. With 6.25 goals, 65.7 total shots on goal and 8.25 power plays Carolina’s games have healthy averages that contribute to fantasy friendly environments. The Hurricanes scoring chance numbers appear to be low but that’s because they’re one of just six teams that have only played four games this year, they rank 26th in SCF (90), 30th in SCA (80), 20th in HDF (29) and 19th in HDA (30). This game has potential to go off and be the highest scoring game on the night, the Hurricanes have been playing great hockey and have plenty of offensive skill to take advantage of the opportunities the Leafs’ defensive will give up. Using players from both sides of this game, I intend to have a full on game stack tonight. Anthony DeAngelo runs the Hurricanes top power play unit and leads the team in PPTOI (3:51), pairing him with any or multiple of the Hurricanes top forwards Sebastian Aho, Teovo Teravainen, Vincent Trocheck or Andrei Svechnikov makes for an excellent correlation play. For the Toronto side of the stack it’s pretty simple, go back to the Austin Matthews and Mitch Marner well. Matthews is third on the team in shots on goal (17) but has yet to find the back of the net, goal scorers score goals, it’s that simple, he’ll find his game and tonight is as good of a spot as any. Marner averages over 3 ½ minutes of PPTOI (3:37) and is Matthews partner in crime, so they both typically find success together.