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NHL Cheat Sheet: Stanley Cup Final Fantasy Hockey Showdown Picks, Bets on DraftKings Sportsbook for July 2

Geoff Ulrich gives his top DraftKings NHL picks and bets to target for Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final.

Friday’s NHL slate starts at 8:00 p.m. ET and features Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final between the Tampa Bay Lightning and Montreal Canadiens. In this article, you can find DFS advice for DraftKings plus some DraftKings Sportsbook bets to target as well.

Set your DraftKings fantasy hockey lineups here: NHL Showdown $60K Playoff Mullet [$20K to 1st]

DraftKings Sportsbook

Tie after 60 minutes (OT) +305

Each of these teams have played at least one OT game in their past three series and with tonight being somewhat of a do or die for Montreal I would expect a tight, closely contested game. The tie here isn’t something I would go after every night but we are getting a good price to chase it here, especially going off the hit rate of OT games in these playoffs thus far. If you think this one stays close, then the move may be to hit the tie button for one night and go for the longer odds payout rather than choosing a side.

Nick Suzuki to score a point (+1 point) -118

Suzuki was Montreal’s best player in Game 2 as the forward grabbed nine SOG and a goal in a losing cause. He now has nine points in his last 10 games, so the line here looks very generous given his recent performance. There’s also the fact he’s been a far better producer at the Bell Centre, grabbing 33 of his 55 points this season at home (33 points in 36 home games). The over on his point prop here is very enticing.

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All odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.

DraftKings DFS Showdown

Captain’s Picks

Nikita Kucherov ($15,000 CP)

Kucherov certainly looks like he’s back to 100%. The Tampa Bay winger struggled with injury concerns at times against the Isles but had a monster Game 1 and followed that up with a Game 2 where he still landed three SOG despite playing just over 15 minutes of ice time. Despite the slow Game 2 I’d look for Kucherov and the Lightning’s first-line to make more of an impact here. The Bolts’ biggest edge in this series is their skill advantage at the top and there’s no more skillful player on these two teams than Kucherov. He’s got three three-point games over his last eight starts and should be eager to bounce back here after a slow Game 2.

Carey Price ($14,400 CP)

It may not be enough for Montreal to win the series, or even this game, but I am expecting Carey Price to bounce back in Game 3. The veteran has been the Canadiens’ rock all playoffs and didn’t let a 3-1 deficit against Toronto bother him much in the first series. He hit the DraftKings save bonus in two of his three home starts against Vegas and should be motivated here to bounce back after two poor performances in Tampa. Even with Montreal at home you should get significantly lower ownership on Price than Andrei Vasilevskiy ($16,800 CP), who is coming off one of his best games of the playoffs, making Price a great GPP target.

Nick Suzuki ($13,200 CP)

This series feels like it could be a coming out party for Suzuki, after he had a dominant Game 2 which saw him launch nine SOG and score Montreal’s only goal. Suzuki has now grabbed 19 or more DKFP in three of his last six games and has proven he has some of the best upside of any forward on the Canadiens. He’s a good pivot here if you want to avoid the heavy chalk (the goalies and the Tampa first-line) in the Captain’s spot today.

Value Options

Anthony Cirelli ($5,400)

Cirelli took advantage of an opportunity created by the Alex Killorn injury and grabbed a goal and 11.3 DKFP in the big Tampa Game 2 win. Killorn is out for Tampa here in Game 3 again, so look for Cirelli—whose goal came on the power-play—to get extended power-play minutes in Game 3. He skated over 19 minutes in Game 2, remains an integral part of the Lightning's top-six and is undervalued here at just $5.4K given his role.

Joel Armia ($3,400)

Armia returned to the lineup for the Canadiens in Game 2 and promptly played over 14 minutes of ice time, which is big minutes for a player in the $3K range. He’s a streaky producer but has three goals in his last 10 games and is averaging 2.0 SOG over that same span. Of all the Montreal bottom-six forwards he’s likely got the best chance to snag you a goal (and perhaps even the SOG bonus) given his skating ability and work on special teams.

Barclay Goodrow ($2,400)

Goodrow is averaging over 17 minutes in his last 10 starts, which right away makes him a very interesting target here given his price point. He’s not a prolific goal scorer but does have assists now in his last two games and could see slightly more ice time as part of the Lightning’s pivotal third-line here—given the way they performed in Game 2, and the fact that Alex Killorn is banged up. If you’re playing Blake Coleman ($4,600) or Yanni Gourde (6,600), stacking them with Goodrow here makes a ton of sense given the savings he provides.

Contrarian Stack

Montreal L1/PP1

Nick Suzuki ($8,800) — Tyler Toffoli ($8,400) — Cole Caufield ($7,400)

The Canadiens were able to break through on the power-play in Game 2 and there’s little doubt that the Canadiens’ best chances came from their top offensive trio, who produced 14 SOG between them in a losing cause. Montreal’s best hope to get some pucks past Andrei Vasilevskiy ($11,200) early may come from drawing some early penalties and getting their power-play going here. If we expect an early blitz from Montreal in a do or die game, then that prediction could come true and this line would see heightened minutes as a result. The Lightning’s penalty-kill hasn’t exactly been terrible in the playoffs but they are operating at a worse rate than they did in the regular season.

Additionally, both Caufield and Suzuki have been far better fantasy plays at home as well in 2021, giving this line more credence as one to pay up for here. I outlined Suzuki’s stats above, but Caufield has seen five of his eight goals this season (in 27 games) come at the Bell Centre, with two of those eight coming on the power-play. Montreal’s power-play has actually been slightly better in these playoffs (likely as a result of having Caufield) and targeting them all tonight gives you exposure to a trio who is capable of netting you multiple goals and SOG bonuses. They’re a good GPP target here as the series moves back to Montreal.

Set your DraftKings fantasy hockey lineups here: NHL Showdown $60K Playoff Mullet [$20K to 1st]

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