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Fantasy Hockey Cheat Sheet: Top DraftKings NHL DFS Picks, Values, Lineup Strategy for January 6

Geoff Ulrich gives his top NHL picks and lineup advice for Thursday’s fantasy hockey slate on DraftKings.

Thursday’s NHL slate features 11 games, which begins at 7:00 p.m. ET on DraftKings. In this article, you will find DFS advice for DraftKings lineups, plus some DraftKings Sportsbook bets to target.

Set your DraftKings fantasy hockey lineups here: NHL $70K Kick Save [$20K to 1st]

DraftKings Sportsbook

Devils vs. Blue Jackets over 6.0 goals (-110)

I’m honestly surprised we don’t have a 6.5 goal total for this game, although perhaps we will by puck drop. The last six Blue Jackets games have all seen seven or more goals scored and some of them have gone well over the 7.0 goal mark. Seven of the last eight Devils games have also seen 7.0 or more goals scored. These two teams have weak goaltending and high-end scorers up front, and they are finally healthy with the likes of Patrik Laine and Jack Hughes back. Take the over here.

Jets +1.5 Puckline (-125)

The Jets take on the Avalanche on the road and sit as +185 underdogs on the money line. Despite the Avalanche coming in hot, having won seven of their last eight games, the Jets match up with them pretty well and have won three games in a row themselves. Both these teams have solid offenses and some pretty shoddy penalty kills, but the Jets do likely have an edge with former Vezina winner Conner Hellebuyck in net. Expect a close game with there being some value at getting the Jets at -125 just to cover the +1.5 goals.

Place your NHL bets at DraftKings Sportsbook or by downloading the DraftKings Sportsbook app.

Top Stack

Detroit Red Wings at Anaheim Ducks

Dylan Larkin ($5,900) — Tyler Bertuzzi ($5,700) — Lucas Raymond ($4,500)

It sounds strange to write, but the Red Wings top line has been one of the best fantasy producers in the league this year. They rank fourth in the league in goals scored and would be challenging for the top spot in that regard, if winger Tyler Bertuzzi hadn’t missed so many games. Bertuzzi is back in the fold and over his last five games, he’s now grabbed six goals and is shooting the puck at an insanely efficient rate, which puts him up with the best scorers in the league.

This line has produced 19 points over their last five games and takes on a Ducks team who will be without the services of essentially their entire top line due to injuries and COVID outages. The Red Wings are affordable and a team in a great spot to produce some points given the overall difficulties facing the Ducks right now. Stack the Red Wings L1 for max value and upside.

Superstar to Target

Sidney Crosby, Pittsburgh Penguins at Philadelphia Flyers ($8,200)

The Penguins are riding high and on a nine-game win streak, where they have averaged 4.1 goals over their last 10 games. The Penguins’ stud, Sidney Crosby, has been showing better and better since coming back from injury and comes into this game having grabbed 16.5 DKFP in his last outing and 15 points over his last 10 games alone.

The Flyers are a terrific matchup for just about any star player, as they have allowed the fourth-most quality scoring chances this year and the second-most shots on net per game. Crosby has made a career out of carving up the Flyers, and he comes in with his team firing on all cylinders and ready to put together a double-digit win streak. Look for Crosby to continue his dominance over the Flyers, and don't be afraid to build around the Penguins’ stud, who has been one of the most consistent fantasy producers in the league of late.

Value on Offense

Craig Smith, Boston Bruins vs. Minnesota Wild ($4,400)

The Bruins have made some adjustments to their top couple of lines and the biggest beneficiary from a DFS perspective has been Smith, who is now skating alongside Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand. Smith has averaged 0.5 points per game over his last 10 games, and he has also averaged a healthy 3.2 blocked shots + shots on goal over that span as well.

The uptick in usage has led to him grabbing points in his last two games and six shots on goal in his last outing. Take the discount, as Smith is now in a much better role for fantasy purposes. The Bruins come in with a healthy 3.4 implied goal total and are a team you should definitely be targeting for stacking purposes as well.

Stud Goalies

Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen, Buffalo Sabres vs. San Jose Sharks ($7,400)

We don't have too many early goalie confirmations today, but one name who looks set to be in the pipes tonight for his team is Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen. The Sabres netminder has been solid for Buffalo this year and posted save percentages of .905 or better in all seven of his starts this season. He’s also seeing a ton of rubber every week and has now grabbed the DraftKings shots on goal bonus in each of his last two games, stopping 75 of the last 83 shots he’s faced in the process.

The Sabres sit as just +100 underdogs and face a Sharks team who hasn’t looked that good since the COVID break ended, so the win bonus is certainly in play today as well. Luukkonen makes for a great value target regardless of the format you’re playing and a great upside play for big field GPPs.

Value on Defense

John Klingberg, Dallas Stars at Florida Panthers ($4,300)

The Stars face a Panthers team that is good in almost all facets of the game but do lack a little bit in terms of their efficiency killing penalties. The Stars feature an emerging offense and especially excel on the power play, where John Klingberg has now grabbed three points in his last five games. The Stars fifth-ranked power play is anchored by Klingberg, who still possesses good upside despite not producing as many shots on goal or blocked shots as some of the other elite power-play defensemen in the league.

What Klingberg does do well is produce points, and he’s been doing that with much more consistency of late, as he’s grabbed five in his last four games and is averaging about 13.0 DKFP in his last three outings. The Stars PP1 is an interesting contrarian target, and Klingberg makes for a good stacking option if going that route—or if you just want a good upside play at defense under $5,000 today.

Power-Play Defensemen

Brent Burns, San Jose Sharks at Buffalo Sabres ($6,100)

While I do like the Sabres’ netminder for daily fantasy, there’s every chance that the Sabres-Sharks game devolves into a shootout at some point, which would mean good things potentially for the Sharks’ special team aces. Brent Burns enters this game having grabbed points in each of his last three games and also landed a power-play goal two games ago. Burns could even see more usage here with the man advantage, as Erik Karlsson is questionable to suit up today.

Even without his recent points surge, Burns would have remained a solid producer for fantasy purposes because he comes in averaging 5.3 blocked shots + shots on goal over his last 10 games. Any points outburst here by him or his teammates would likely mean Burns could push for 25.0 or even 30.0 DKFP — as both bonuses are within his reach on a nightly basis. Take the huge discount we’re getting on one of the most consistent upside plays on defense at the moment in DFS.

Set your DraftKings fantasy hockey lineups here: NHL $70K Kick Save [$20K to 1st]

I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is wavegoodbye) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment in building lineups. I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.

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