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Daily Fantasy Hockey Value Picks – December 4

Michael Clifford’s daily fantasy hockey value picks Include line combinations, matchups and Draft Day values.

New Jersey Devils right wing Jaromir Jagr
New Jersey Devils right wing Jaromir Jagr

Nov 21, 2013; Los Angeles, CA, USA; New Jersey Devils right wing Jaromir Jagr (68) reacts after scoring the winning goal in the overtime period of the game against the Los Angeles Kings at Staples Center. New Jersey Devils won 2-1 in overtime. Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

I generally do not pick two players playing against each other in the same game for a daily lineup. The same applies for a goalie and a player from opposite teams. You might see two players among the “value picks” from opposite teams, but that doesn’t mean you should take them both. No matter the value, you’re also likely cannibalizing points, so any gains made below a certain price point – the point where production and cost intersect – can be lost if production declines overall as well.

There are many things that determine value: The player’s history (both short and long-term), the price, recent production, opponent, line matching at even-strength, power play time and injuries are just some of the factors to consider. The “Top Value” doesn’t necessarily mean the cheapest player, either.

Finally, as far as goalie’s go, it’s the one position I’ll pay through the nose for if I really like the match-up. The same applies for back-ups with good match-ups. In a given night, with a full slate of games, I won’t have more than three different goalies across all my lineups, usually two. I’ll name the goalies I like specifically in the match-ups they appear in.

Here is today’s slate of games (and DraftDay values). Reminder: check Left Wing Lock for up-to-the-minute information on starting goalies.

On small days like today, you need to stack lines and teams. The unfortunate part is that means you will probably have to stack some Flyers somewhere. If you’re not ok with a proposition like putting your daily money into a team like Philadelphia tonight, I would recommend taking the night off.

Games are color-coded as follows:

Green means load up. Yellow means grab a couple of line mates. Red means value plays only.

Montréal Canadiens at New Jersey Devils

I don’t put a lot of stock into what a team does historically, but New Jersey has typically had Montréal number for the last couple of years. New Jersey also outplayed Montréal on Monday, out attempting them 54-31 at even-strength. The Habs escaped with a win at home, I don’t expect the same tonight.

The nice thing about having two games from two teams so close together is that we can get a really good feel about how lines will be matched. On Monday, the line of Henrique/Bernier/Elias had a feast, out-shooting the trio of Briere/Gionta/Plekanec by a ratio of 2:1 and even had one of New Jersey’s goals. Look for that matchup again tonight.

Montréal is not a team I bet against lightly, and it’s not only because I drive their Fanbus.  The Habs are 6-0-1 over their last seven games, and that game against New Jersey was realistically the only game where they clearly got outplayed. That said, Montréal has four power play goals in their last four games, and haven’t given up a power play goal against over that stretch. I’m not a big fan of Max Pacioretty’s price anymore, but he’s a streaky scorer, and he’s definitely on a heater.

Top RW Value

Top LW Value

Top C Value

Top D Value

Bargain Bin

Jaromir Jagr

(NJD)

$9150

Max Pacioretty

(MTL)

$14,350

Patrik Elias

(NJD)

$9250

Marek Zidlicky

(NJD)

$7250

Brandon Prust

(MTL)

$5600

Philadelphia Flyers at Detroit Red Wings

In a very rare occurrence, the Red Wings will be without both Henrik Zetterberg (herniated disc) and Pavel Datsyuk (concussion) tonight. I don’t want to say a team entirely revolves around two players, but those two are the only Wings forwards to average over 17:30 of ice time per game, and they’re both over 20 minutes per game. You don’t just replace those players overnight, I don’t care what kind of winning streak they’re on. And let’s be fair about their four-game winning streak, three of those teams were Ottawa, Buffalo and the Islanders, while the fourth was at home against Boston in a trap game. In fact, that win against Boston was their only win since Halloween against a playoff team.

Philadelphia has played much better hockey since the middle of October, and are coming off a very close loss against one of the West’s best teams in Minnesota.

Today would be a good time to stack the top line from Philadelphia. Without Detroit’s two best forwards, the rest of the team will have to pick up the slack, and I’m not sure there’s any other line on the roster that can match up well against the Giroux line. This could end up being a low-scoring affair, but all signs point to a win from Philadelphia, making starter Steve Mason a good play tonight.

Top RW Value

Top LW Value

Top C Value

Top D Value

Bargain Bin

Jakub Voracek

(PHI)

$9900

Scott Hartnell

(PHI)

$9000

Claude Giroux

(PHI)

$11,000

Kimmo Timonen

(PHI)

$7400

Sean Couturier

(PHI)

$7100

Phoenix Coyotes at Calgary Flames

Phoenix dismantled (or Edmonton dismantled themselves, I should say) the Oilers last night in a 6-2 rout. Historically, the Alberta trip has been tough for teams to get through. Considering those two teams have combined for fewer wins (18) than Chicago (20) or Colorado (19), it’s just not the case anymore.

Calgary finished November with a 4-8-2 record, but to their credit, they didn’t get shutout in a single game and scored fewer than two goals in just two of those 14 contests. They don’t have a problem scoring, they have a problem stopping goals from getting scored. That’s not a good thing with the NHL’s fourth-highest scoring team coming into town.

I look at this game and I don’t see a clear-cut winner. Phoenix is undoubtedly the better team, but they are playing the second game of a back-to-back, probably with their backup in net, and facing a rested team. In short, I doubt either goalie is a good play, but this game is screaming for lots of goals scored.

Top RW Value

Top LW Value

Top C Value

Top D Value

Bargain Bin

Radim Vrbata

(PHX)

$12,000

Mikkel Boedker

(PHX)

$7300

Mike Ribeiro

(PHX)

$9200

Oliver Ekman-Larsson

(PHX)

$8300

Jiri Hudler

(CGY)

$7200

Good luck in your daily games!

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