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Fantasy Hockey Picks: Top DraftKings NHL DFS Stacks for February 18

Matt Meiselman gives his top NHL stacks for Thursday’s fantasy hockey slate on DraftKings, which starts at 7:00 p.m. ET.

Philadelphia Flyers v Washington Capitals Photo by Patrick McDermott/NHLI via Getty Images

It’s another large slate for the NHL on Thursday night, with nine games scheduled and 18 teams to choose from. The Toronto Maple Leafs continue to be the primary focus as they once again face the Ottawa Senators, but there are plenty of other teams in appealing matchups — and with cheaper prices, too. As usual, the focus here is stacking, which is especially important for generating upside in GPPs on large slates like this one. Tonight’s main contests lock at 7:00 p.m. ET on DraftKings.

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Top Stacks

Toronto Maple Leafs

Auston Matthews ($9,000), Mitch Marner ($8,300), Joe Thornton ($3,800)

Boston Bruins

Patrice Bergeron ($8,300), David Pastrnak ($8,900), Brad Marchand ($7,900)

Washington Capitals

Evgeny Kuznetsov ($5,600), Alex Ovechkin ($8,400), T.J. Oshie ($4,600)

Starting with the Matthews line, the prices on Matthews and Marner continue to rise, but the presence of Joe Thornton functions primarily to keep the aggregate cost within reason. Thornton doesn’t add much to these two superstars at this stage of his career, but he plays a major role in making them more affordable. The Bruins’ top line is significantly more expensive and should be lower owned as a result, but they’ll likely still be a popular choice in a good matchup at home against the Devils. The Capitals also draw a strong matchup at home against the Sabres, and the prices on Kuznetsov and Oshie, in particular, seem to be far too low. Ovechkin is basically always worth considering due to his massive upside, and his cheaper linemates make him much easier to fit into lineups tonight.

Value Stacks

Philadelphia Flyers

Sean Couturier ($4,900), James van Riemsdyk ($5,400), Joel Farabee ($4,200)

New York Rangers

Ryan Strome ($4,300), Artemi Panarin ($6,200), Kaapo Kakko ($2,800)

Pittsburgh Penguins

Evgeni Malkin ($5,100), Jason Zucker ($3,300), Kasperi Kapanen ($3,100)

The Flyers return to the ice tonight after a long layoff due to COVID protocols, and it’ll be just the second game this month for Sean Couturier. The Flyers are missing several key forwards, but the top line looks strong and could be in line for extra minutes due to the lack of depth. On the Rangers side of that matchup, there could be extra chances for Artemi Panarin — who’s also back from an injury — as his line goes up against the diminished depth of the Flyers. Panarin is priced down and has very cheap linemates, so the Rangers second line looks like one of the better values on this slate. Speaking of second lines, Evgeni Malkin has struggled recently and the prices on his line have stayed extremely low, and there’s simply far too much talent here for an aggregate cost of just $11.5K. This could be the most popular value line of the night, and the rationale certainly makes sense.

Contrarian Stacks

Buffalo Sabres

Jack Eichel ($7,900), Victor Olofsson ($5,900), Jeff Skinner ($3,700)

San Jose Sharks

Logan Couture ($6,300), Evander Kane ($5,700), Kevin Labanc ($4,200)

Minnesota Wild

Nick Bjugstad ($4,700), Zach Parise ($5,200), Kyrill Kaprizov ($5,200)

On the opposite side of Alex Ovechkin, the Buffalo Sabres should have plenty of scoring chances, too, facing a Capitals team that isn’t very good defensively. Jack Eichel is expensive, and the presence of so many high-priced options should mean that his ownership ends up fairly low. The Sharks’ top line doesn’t have a player as expensive as Eichel, but they aren’t particularly cheap, either, and they’re almost certain to get lost on this slate; especially in a theoretically tough road game against the Blues. St. Louis is missing some key players, however, and the absence of Colton Parayko and Jaden Schwartz, in particular, should give the Sharks extra opportunities. Lastly, the Wild figure to go overlooked in their road game in Anaheim, but the prices on some of their best players have dropped. The fact that they’re now being considered the third line should make them even more contrarian on this slate.

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All views expressed are my own. I am an employee of DraftKings and am ineligible to play in public DFS or DKSB contests.