<
>

Monday fantasy hockey tips: NHL picks, matchups, more

Lukas Sedlak of the Philadelphia Flyers faces a former team, the Colorado Avalanche, tonight. Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

The Boston Bruins home win streak will really be put to the test! Oh, what's that? The Vegas Golden Knights are without Alex Pietrangelo and Jack Eichel might not play either. Never mind.

Well, in Edmonton we'll have a meeting between the two biggest fish in the free-agent goalie pond from the offseason! Oh, what's that? The Oilers are using Stuart Skinner more often than Jack Campbell of late (with good reason) and Darcy Kuemper is day-to-day for the Capitals. So, we might see both of them, but we might also see neither of them. OK, then.

Do you think anyone is super invested in a Lukas Sedlak revenge game? Can that be the headlining hook? No? Fine.

There are six games on this Monday and each of them has some intriguing elements, but nothing that stands out too much. The St. Louis Blues and Montreal Canadiens are the only teams in action that will play again on Tuesday.

Resources: Goalie depth chart | Injuries | Schedule | How to watch on ESPN+ | Sign up for ESPN Fantasy Hockey | Download the ESPN Fantasy App | Daily lines

All times Eastern.

Favorable scoring match-ups

Washington Capitals at Edmonton Oilers

8:30 p.m., Rogers Place, Watch live on ESPN+

The Oilers rank 23rd and the Capitals rank 24th in goals for per 60 minutes at five-on-five (EvolvingHockey.com), so it might be special teams that gets to make the difference in this one. T.J. Oshie and Marcus Johansson are offer available access to the Capitals advantage, while everyone that matters from the Oilers offense will already be in someone's lineup.

Montreal Canadiens at Vancouver Canucks

10:30 p.m., Rogers Arena, Watch live on ESPN+

The Canucks are sixth and the Canadiens are seventh in goals against per 60 minutes at five-on-five, so the fireworks here might get driven by inadequate defense more than overwhelming offense. The Canucks have a top six that is clicking at the moment, while the Habs top line is trying not to lose the momentum they had developed in the first half of November. Cole Caufield, Kirby Dach and Nick Suzuki haven't potted a goal together at even strength in the past four games, which was kind of expected after their otherworldly shooting percentage needed to come down to earth.

Mid-tier fantasy forwards

Cam Atkinson, W, Philadelphia Flyers (21.0%): Still no official word on his season debut, but the news is that Atkinson is medically cleared to return for the Flyers. He immediately becomes a threat for top-line and top-power-play action. That could mean something depending on your league's depth. He's not someone to pre-emptively put on rosters in your average 10-teamer, but go a little deeper and Atkinson is someone to add now.

See also:

Deep league/Daily Fantasy value forwards

Alex Galchenyuk, W, Colorado Avalanche (0.2%): If it turns out Artturi Lehkonen needs to miss time, why shouldn't the Avs give Galchenyuk a shot on the top line? After all, Valeri Nichushkin was a reclamation project as a post-hype producer in the NHL. Galchenyuk is the ultimate reclamation, having suited up for eight NHL teams since the 2017-18 season. Not for nothing have the Avs added him to their injury-decimated forward core, as he posted seven points in seven games in the AHL since making his season debut on Nov. 12. If Lehkonen's upper-body injury that knocked him out of the first period on Saturday lingers, I really hope the Avs give Galchenyuk a shot to play with Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen.

Nils Hoglander, W, Vancouver Canucks (0.4%): Of lines with at least 70 minutes together at five-on-five, the trio of Hoglander, Bo Horvat and J.T. Miller are seventh in Corsi percentage and 26th in goals for per 60 minutes (per MoneyPuck.com). I think the Canucks may have finally rounded out their top six -- and it looks like Hoglander will be a part of it.

play
0:44
Nils Hoglander scores goal for Canucks

Nils Hoglander scores goal for Canucks

Lukas Sedlak, C/W, Philadelphia Flyers (0.1%): Revenge narrative coming at a time when Sedlak is seeing some big minutes? The Avs waived him earlier this season and Sedlak has found a way to contribute to the Flyers offense. Some healthy bodies coming back are pushing his minutes down again, but maybe the extra motivation of facing his former teammates is enough juice here.

Adam Ruzicka, C/W, Calgary Flames (3.4%): Talk about doing more with less. Booted out of the top six and held to 12 minutes of ice time? How about a goals and two helpers from Ruzicka on Saturday.

See also:

Mid-tier fantasy defensemen

Evan Bouchard, D, Edmonton Oilers (73.1%): I know he's above the 70% threshold on rosters, which I try to make a habit of not including players so universally utilized. But Bouchard has recently jumped back above 70% after dipping below. He's finally getting equal of more power-play time than Tyson Barrie for the past two games. Though we'll see how that continues after Barrie re-asserted himself with a pair of helpers on Saturday.

See also:

Deep league/Daily Fantasy value defensemen

Mike Matheson, D, Montreal Canadiens (5.4%): Maybe it's just the 12 teams that are playing, but finding a low-rostership defenseman on this slate is not easy. As the season wears on, the defense is really migrating into two categories -- useful and not useful for fantasy. And the rostership really reflects that. If you really need one in a deeper league, Matheson is playing enormous minutes overall as part of getting the minutes on the top power play for the Habs.

play
1:03
Mike Matheson tallies goal vs. Flyers

Mike Matheson tallies goal vs. Flyers

See also:

Goalies

Thomas Greiss, G, St. Louis Blues (0.7%): Greiss will most certainly start either Monday against the Rangers or Tuesday against the New York Islanders. If it turns out to be the Monday game, that makes him a decent target for a stream start. Other stats aside, the W matters the most here and the Rangers have won only five games in the past four weeks (the Isles have won nine).

Stuart Skinner, G, Edmonton Oilers (20.6%): As long as the Oilers don't spend an inordinate amount of time in the box, the visiting Capitals are 26th in the league for five-on-five scoring and 22nd in expected goals for (both ranks per 60 minutes and per EvolvingHockey.com). Skinner is not confirmed as of Monday morning, but I think everyone expect for the folks cutting paychecks for the goaltenders would be starting him at this point.

Sam Montembeault, G, Montreal Canadiens (4.7%): Consider Montembeault a combination of the two goaltenders listed above him here. Like Greiss, this Monday matchup against the Canucks is the preferable one to target for a stream as opposed to the Tuesday game against the Seattle Kraken. And like Skinner, he's not confirmed to start but is the clear better option for his club. Does that mean they save him for the Kraken and roll Jake Allen here? If it's Montembeault against the Canucks, there's an argument to stream him.

Bench 'em

Alex Pietrangelo and Jack Eichel, D and C, Vegas Golden Knights (99.1% and 99.6%): Eichel is a game-time decision with an injury and Pietrangelo will miss his fourth game in a row for personal reasons. Make sure Shea Theodore is in lineups and, for leagues with games-played thresholds, consider reserving Chandler Stephenson and Mark Stone.

Vincent Trocheck, C, New York Rangers (80.2%): It's unclear if Filip Chytil will suit up for this one, but it is clear that if he does, Trocheck is bound for a bump to the third line. The Rangers moved him there Nov. 30 and intended to keep him there is Chytil's lower-body injury hadn't held him out of the lineup. It's becoming clear the Trocheck-Artemi Panarin connection is not as effective as the Ryan Strome-Panarin connection was in previous seasons.

Carter Hart, G, Philadelphia Flyers (62.8%): Just in case it's not painfully obvious at this stage. Nine of his past 10 starts have resulted in negative fantasy points.

Darcy Kuemper, G, Washington Capitals (91.0%): The matchup isn't super intimidating, as the Oilers need power-play time to really kill you and the Capitals (sans Tom Wilson) do a good job of staying out of the box (36 times shorthanded is just four more than the league-leading Detroit Red Wings for fewest times). However, Kuemper has drawn a day-to-day label after taking what looked like an innocuous elbow to the head on Saturday, but it ultimately led him to get yanked.