Here in the environmental study 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.
Florida Panthers @ New York Rangers
Totals: Highest 5.5 DK 5.5 FD 5.5
Florida Panthers (10-0-1) kick off a road trip through the Northeast by taking on the New York Rangers (6-3-3). All of Florida’s games this year have seen at least 5 total goals and four games had 7 or more goals, the Panthers themselves have scored 4 or more goals in all but two games. To date Panthers’ games are averaging 6.2 goals, 66 total shots on goal and 7.3 power plays. Florida’s scoring chance numbers back up their 10-0-1 record, showing a team that generates plenty of offense and limits their opponents’ chances just enough, ranking 11th in SCF (245), 22nd in SCA (211), 11th in HDF (72) and 8th in HDA (79). The discrepancy between their SCA and HDA rankings suggest that the Panthers play good defense but when teams do create some offense against them it tends to be of the high value variety. The Rangers return home from a West Coast trip for one game before getting back on the road. New York’s last three games all featured at least 5 goals, including an 11 goal outburst with the Oilers. This season the Rangers games are averaging 5.2 goals, 59.2 total shots on goal and 6.8 power plays. When it comes to their scoring chance rankings New York is revealed to be a team with a fragile defense, checking in at 21st in SCF (218), 5th in SCA (281), 31st in HDF (53) and 6th in HDA (82). The Rangers look like they’re going to struggle to generate consistent offensive pressure tonight, but they should get a few great chances and could capitalize on them, however most of the fantasy points in this one should come from the Panthers side.
Los Angeles Kings @ Toronto Maple Leafs
Totals: Highest 6 DK 6 FD 6
The Los Angeles Kings (5-5-1) head to Eastern Canada to take on the Toronto Maple Leafs (7-4-1) to begin a four game road trip. The Kings last five games have all featured 5 or more goals and the Kings have scored at least 3 goals in four straight games. On the year games Los Angeles plays in are averaging 5.4 goals, 64.6 total shots on goal and 6.8 power plays. The Kings shoddy shooting percentage (6.7% 23rd) should be turning around soon with the rate they’re generating scoring opportunities, ranking 4th in SCF (263), 10th in SCA (243), 9th in HDF (75) and 17th in HDA (68). The Kings haven’t been able to hit their offensive ceiling but in the right matchup they can thrive, and their opponent tonight is the right matchup. The Maple Leafs host the Kings riding a five game winning streak, three of those five games featured 4 or more goals and the Leafs have scored 4 or more goals in three of the last four games. Toronto’s games average 5.3 goals, 65.2 total shots on goals and 6 power plays and they rank 1st in SCF (321), 9th in SCA (250), 2nd in HDF (94) and 9th in HDA (77). The Leafs are in a similar situation to the Kings, their scoring chance numbers show a team that creates plenty of offense but their dismal shooting percentage (6.4% 26th) is holding them back. On a small three game slate, this matchup could feature the majority of the top fantasy scorers tonight.