Joel Dorcas | January 29th, 2020
Welcome back into Ice Picks. Today, we have a six-game slate on tap. Teams will be making their push in the upcoming weeks to potentially solidify their standing which in turn will give us a better idea of who the real contenders are. As for the world of daily fantasy, three games tonight have piqued my interest. We all know the drill by now, we’re about to make some Ice Picks!
Nashville Predators (22-19-7) at Washington Capitals (34-11-5)
The Washington Capitals continue to be an elite team while the Nashville Predators continue to struggle. The Preds have dropped three of their last four contests with the latest being a 5-2 setback to the Toronto Maple Leafs Monday night. Nashville ranks 23rd in the league with a GA/GP mark of 3.25. They enter this game with a road killing percentage of just 68.3%.
The Washington Capitals continue their impressive season with the latest victory happening Monday, a 4-2 win in Montreal. The Caps boast a fifth beast goal per game average of 3.56. They have won four straight and have dropped just three games in their last 10.
The Caps will get an extra boost with All-Star Alex Ovechkin returning to the lineup. Other players to target are winger Jakub Vrana and center Nicklas Backstrom. Vrana is in midst of a nine-game point streak. Backstrom is featured on the number one powerplay unit, he has a goal, four assists, 15 shots and five blocks in his last five games.
Tampa Lightning (29-15-5) at L.A. Kings (18-27-5)
The Lightning and Kings tangle in Los Angeles in what could be a lopsided matchup. The Lightning enters this one with an impressive 14-8-3 road record and has lost just two games in their last 10 (7-2-1). As for the Kings, they have won just two games in their last 10 and are killing penalties at just a 73.4% clip.
Steven Stamkos has registered 13 points in his last 10 games, including two goals in the O.T. loss to the Stars Monday. Nikita Kucherov is the team leader in shots on goal(23) and has five goals in his last five before Monday’s action.
Anthony Cirelli and Jan Rutta profile as nice mid-tier salary saving plays. Cirelli has three goals and three assists in his last five. Rutta is more of a “punt” play as he is filling just the peripheral columns in his last 10 (10 shots, 5 blocks). Rutta is currently paired with stud defenseman Victor Hedman on the number one D pair.
Calgary Flames (26-19-5) at Edmonton Oilers (26-18-5)
The “battle of Alberta” continues it’s long-running series with another game that should be a spirited one. This will be the third time these guys hook up this season. Calgary has won both games so far, 5-1 December 27th and 4-3 January 11th. The Flames are 6-4 in their last 10 with a GA/GP of 3.00. The Oilers are 6-3-1 over the same time frame and are averaging 4.00 goals per game. The powerplay has been dynamite all season long, a league-leading 29.7% conversion rate.
Be sure to always check the latest line combinations, but the trio of Connor McDavid, Josh Archibald, and James Neal are all firmly in play. McDavid is scorching hot right now, he has four goals, seven assists and 20 shots in his last five games. Archibald is getting some minutes on the top unit, but the return of Zack Kassian could jumble up the line combinations. Wherever he fits into the lineup, Archibald is a nice value play as he has registered three goals and two assists in his last five.
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