Welcome back, NHL fans! Nine games make up the year’s first NHL DFS slate on 10/3/18 with some massive contests over at DraftKings and FanDuel.

If you have any questions, feel free to hit me up on Twitter at @chrismeaney. I’ll be updating throughout the day as we hear about morning skates and get confirmation in goal.

NHL DFS Tournaments

Opening Night Puck Drop: $5 entry, $250K guaranteed – $50K to 1st!
Face-Off: $27 entry, $50K guaranteed – $5K to 1st!
NHL MEGA Breakaway: $4 entry, $100K guaranteed – $20K to 1st!

Claim $20 In Free Play At DraftKings

NHL DFS Centers

John Tavares vs. MON ($7.4 DK / $8.3 FD)

Deciding whether to roster John Tavares or Auston Matthews will be a tough call all season long. You can get by with playing both at times, despite the duo only scheduled to share ice time on the power play. It’s not an ideal strategy, but the Maple Leafs are going to score some goals in 2018. Opposing teams’ very best will likely matchup with the Tavares line, leaving Matthews with some softer matchups. It won’t matter against the Montreal Canadiens, though. This is a very good matchup for Tavares in what will be his first game in a Toronto uniform. Tavares and Mitch Marner will be one of the better duos in the game.

Sean Monahan @ VAN ($5.9 DK / $7.3 FD)

Sean Monahan has a ton of value on DraftKings and is a great pivot from those at the top of the board. Monahan tied a career high with 31 goals in 2017 and set a career mark with 64 points. He’s had at least 27 goals in four straight seasons and has hit the 60-point mark in three of those four seasons. Calgary is improved up front and the power play should be much better. Vancouver allowed the sixth-most goals last season and did nothing to improve its blue line.

Others to consider: Auston Matthews, Logan Couture, Evgeny Kuznetsov


NHL DFS Wingers

Timo Meier vs. ANH ($5.1 DK / $4.2 FD)

The San Jose Sharks are loaded up front, and their lines may shuffle quite often during the season. Timo Meier is slated to open up 2018 on the top line. Meier will play with Joe Pavelski and Joe Thornton, which boosts his fantasy value. Meier scored 21 goals in his second season in the NHL and added 210 shots.

Elias Lindholm @ VAN ($4.8 DK / $5.3 FD)

There’s some salary cap relief with Elias Lindholm. He’ll be making his Flames debut on a line with Monahan and Johnny Gaudreau. Lindholm has at least 45 points in back-to-back seasons but has never played alongside this kind of talent.

Tomas Tatar @ TOR ($4.2 DK / $4.6 FD)

No goalie faced more shots or had more saves than Frederik Andersen last season. Toronto allowed 33.9 shots per game in 2017, and they didn’t do much to improve their defense over the offseason. Tomas Tatar has scored 20 goals in five straight seasons and will get top-line minutes, plus power-play time in Montreal. He’s a cheap tournament play.

Tyler Ennis vs. MON ($4.0 DK / $3.5 FD)

Tyler Ennis has an amazing opportunity with the Maple Leafs and is one of the better values on the board. Ennis will skate on a line with Auston Matthews and Patrick Marleau as William Nylander continues his hold out. Ennis is unlikely to get much power-play time but is a must play where you roster Auston Matthews.

Others to consider: Alex Ovechkin, Johnny Gaudreau, Mitch Marner, Joe Pavelski, Jakub Vrana


NHL DFS Defensemen

Erik Karlsson vs. ANH ($6.9 DK / $7.1 FD)

Erik Karlsson checks in a bit cheaper than his new teammate Brent Burns, but these will be the top two options at defense each night the Sharks play. They have been the top-ranked fantasy defensemen for years, and now they’ll play on the same team. You could go either way. San Jose is expected to load up its power play with both Karlsson and Burns.

Mark Giordano @ VAN ($5.4 DK / $5.6 FD)

Mark Giordano should get more power-play time time season with Dougie Hamilton now a member of the Carolina Hurricanes. Giordano spent time on the No. 1 unit over the preseason, and it looked much more efficient than last season. That’s a small sample size, but there are some skilled players on their unit. The Flames defenseman has double-digit power play points in five straight seasons.

Charlie McAvoy @ WAS ($4.6 DK / $4.5 FD)

Charlie McAvoy was an impressive plus-20 with seven goals and 32 points in his rookie season. He only had seven power play points in 2017, but he could hit that mark in the first month of the season with Torey Krug sidelined for the first three weeks. Expect an increase in power-play minutes and overall ice time for the first few weeks.

Others to consider: Brent Burns, Morgan Rielly, John Carlson, Jeff Petry 


NHL DFS Goalies

Martin Jones vs. ANH ($8.2 DK / $8.8 FD)

Martin Jones is one of the most expensive plays on this slate, but he’s worth the price. Anaheim finished in the bottom half in goals last season and ranked 27th in shots per game. The Ducks will also be without Corey Perry, Ryan Kesler, and Ondrej Kase. San Jose enters the season with a strong offensive unit and a very solid defensive group, especially with the addition of Karlsson.

Carey Price @ TOR ($7.0 DK / $8.2 FD)

First of all, I’ll start by saying this play is totally against the grain. Everyone will be on the Toronto Maple Leafs, so if you’re looking to be a bit different, take a look Carey Price. The Maple Leafs are heavy favorites tonight against the Canadiens in what is the highest total (six goals) of the night. Price is coming off a terrible season and doesn’t have a lot of help in front of him, but if the Habs are going to win, it’ll be because of Price. He’s still considered one of the best goalies in the NHL and can steal a game any given night. He’s cheap and will face a ton of rubber, which gives him a high ceiling if he can pull off the win. Think Leafs in Cash, but roll out Price in at least one tournament. All of those potential saves add up to points.

Others to consider: Frederik Andersen, Mike Smith 


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