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.
Minnesota Wild @ Arizona Coyotes
Totals: Highest 5.5 DK 5.5 FD 5.5
The Minnesota Wild (8-3-0) head to the desert to take on the pushover Arizona Coyotes (1-10-1). The Wild bring with them a three game winning streak and all three of those games featured 7 or more goals. Minnesota’s games are averaging 6.5 goals, 65.9 total shots on goal and 6.8 power plays on the season. The Wild’s scoring chance numbers depict a team with above average offense and stifling defense, ranking 15th in SCF (258), 30th in SCA (204), 11th in HDF (84) and 31st in HDA (51). While their bottom third shooting percentage (6.8% 24th) suggests there’s a higher ceiling to be reached for the Wild. The Coyotes finally picked up their first win of the season in their last game, beating Seattle 5-4. Arizona has given up 4 or more goals in six games this year. On the season Coyotes’ games average 5.5 goals, 57.2 total shots on goal and 5.5 power plays. Arizona’s scoring chance numbers show a below average team across the board, ranking 28th in SCF (213), 17th in SCA (241), 28th in HDF (63) and 19th in HDA (69). Minnesota should be able to impose their will on Arizona and hand the Coyotes their eleventh loss of the year in a blowout.
Toronto Maple Leafs @ Philadelphia Flyers
Totals: Highest 6 DK 6 FD 6
The Toronto Maple Leafs (7-5-1) saw their five game winning streak come to an end at the hands of the Kings and now they take on the Philadelphia Flyers (6-2-2) on Broad St. Ten of Toronto’s thirteen games this year have seen at least 4 goals, including two of their last three. So far this season the Maple Leafs’ games are averaging 5.3 goals, 65 total shots on goal and 5.9 power plays. Despite the lack of massive goal totals Toronto’s scoring chance numbers portray a team that plays in plenty of fantasy friendly games, checking in at 1st in SCF (362), 8th in SCA (274), 1st in HDF (106) and 11th in HDA (82). The superstar laden Leafs are uncharacteristically shooting at 5.9% (28th) and a team this talented won’t continue to do that for long. The Flyers host the Leafs on three days rest and having alternated wins and losses for their last five games. Philadelphia has seen 5 or more goals in six of their ten games this season. Flyers’ games average 5.6 goals, 63.4 total shots on goal and 6.3 power plays this season. Being one of just four teams to play less than eleven games Philadelphia’s scoring chance rankings are underwhelming, 32nd in SCF (200), 21st in SCA (227), 28th in HDF (63) and 15th in HDA (77), but their per game averages look much better for fantasy purposes, 20 SCF, 22.7 SCA, 6.3 HDF and 7.7 HDA. The Flyers’ are also shooting very efficiently right now (8.5% 5th) showing that in addition to generating plenty of offense they’re taking advantage of their opportunities as well.