How to Play Daily Fantasy Hockey
Playing daily fantasy hockey leagues for real money gives you all the excitement of a season-long league, without the season-long commitment. The 30 team 82 game National Hockey League season provides game play opportunity nearly every night of the week. And daily fantasy sports (DFS) also covers playoffs and the Stanley Cup finals, providing even more opportunity. Basically, you build your own dream team of NHL hockey players, adding players to your team according to a fantasy dollar value they have been given. You’ll start out with a base amount of money which you cannot exceed, and you have that much imaginary money to fill your roster.
Points are awarded for shots on goal, successful goals, assists and other actions, and if your fantasy team outscores those that you are playing against, you win cash money which is yours to withdraw immediately. You can play head-to-head (H2H) against a single player, or in leagues and tournaments against as many players as you like. There are freerolls where you can earn money without paying an entry fee, and the stakes run anywhere from $1 to $500 and more, depending upon where you play. Whether you are a total newbie or a longtime player, practice the daily fantasy hockey strategies we are about to teach you, and you will immediately and positively affect your bottom line, and your pocketbook.
Employing a Winning Daily Fantasy Hockey Strategy
Hockey is the fourth most viewed and most popular of the big four professional sports. And that is going to help you become profitable faster in the daily fantasy sports arena than those players who focus on football, baseball and basketball. The fact that not as many people play daily fantasy hockey as the other sports is great news for you. That means your path to profitability will come quicker, and if you simply have an above average knowledge of the game, and begin to put in practice the proven daily fantasy hockey strategies and tips we are about to show you, you stand a much better chance of winning the majority of your matchups than you do in the other three major sports that make up the majority of DFS action.
First and Foremost, Understand the Rules Where You Play
There are a handful of daily fantasy sports sites which stand head and shoulders above the rest. And as long as you choose one of the established and legitimate, top flight DFS providers of daily fantasy hockey we recommend, you will love the experience. But each and every site can be different. For instance, at FanDuel you have $55,000 to start 9 roster spots, and at Draft Kings you have just $50,000 for 9 spots. And at each of those three top rated DFS real money one day hockey websites, the positions of the players you start are uniquely different. First and foremost, understand the rules where you play.
Proper Daily Fantasy Hockey Money Management
A simple and profitable basic strategy to remember is never to bet more than 5% of your entire bankroll on any one tournament, league or contest. There are exceptions, and they are covered in our very last tip below, which discusses advanced bankroll handling. (Fantasy pro tip: Take low-money shots ($1 or $2) at big guaranteed prize pool (GPP) tourneys, and invest more in H2H and 50/50s.)
Just Like Other Fantasy Sports, Value Is King
It should go without saying, but value is everything in daily fantasy sports. Even more so in fantasy hockey, where the game scores, and usually player scores, are much lower than in the other fantasy sports. You should always look for one big name player that is virtually guaranteed to have a big night. You will receive value for the money you spend on him. You will have to pay more for him, but then you simply surround him with mid-level talent with extreme upside for a high-value lineup.
Study the Available Contests Closely
When you select a league or tournament to participate in, you are immediately shown which NHL games you have to choose from for that particular contest. With hundreds of offerings delivered each and every day, you may think shopping around for the games you want is a waste of time. But this is where you can identify mismatches, and take advantage of low priced, high value hockey players. (Fantasy pro tip: If you do not see a contest to your liking, you can always create one.)
Choose Your Goalie First, Then Fill Out Your Lineup
Hockey goalies are the pitchers of fantasy baseball. They can make or break your lineup, so spend most of your time researching in this area. With every save earning your goalie from 0.2 to 0.3 points at the top daily fantasy hockey websites, and nights of 30 shots on goal common, a strong goalie is absolutely required for you to have a decent chance at winning your tournament or league. With a win awarding 3 points for a goalie, and a shutout adding another 2 points, a big night by your goalie guarantees you an excellent chance at taking home the cash every night.
NHL Defensemen in Daily Fantasy Hockey Are the Equivalent of NFL Fantasy Kickers
Night in and night out, you can pretty equally compare the highest price defenseman to a lower-end talent in the same position, and there isn’t much difference. Many nights, defensemen don’t score at all. And if they are out there on the ice while too many goals against are scored, they could bring home negative points. Focus on your forward positions and goalies, filling in your defensemen with lower cost players. This is especially important at the beginning of the NHL season, and about midway through the year you will be able to notice consistent value.(Fantasy pro tip: Incredibly enough, the vast majority of daily fantasy hockey players do not understand this. Use this to your advantage, as the defenseman’s cost can literally make or break your ability to cash.)
Let Las Vegas Do All the Work for You
As mentioned in other fantasy sports pieces here on our website, the brains that set the Las Vegas lines do an incredible amount of research. If a particular game is predicted to be a very high-scoring affair, get in on the action. You want players from that game in your daily fantasy hockey lineup. Yes, you will want to choose a goalie from a matchup you think will go 1 – 0 or 2 – 1, but the rest of your players need to come from contests you believe have the chance to be high-scoring affairs. (Fantasy pro tip: This is where you want to pick your forwards. Most of the top sites require that you start 2 forwards in your daily fantasy hockey lineup, so pick them in those games which Las Vegas attaches a high total and scoring potential to.)
Know Who You Are Playing
One thing you can do when you play in daily fantasy hockey at the most popular and most well-run sites is check the stats on your opponents. When you are thinking about joining a league, you can access information which shows you exactly who has already entered that contest. You can then use the research section or search feature on that site to see exactly how successful those players have been. And once you put in your time at a particular site, you will see the same names over and over frequently enough to understand how they play. Change your game play accordingly.
Advanced Daily Fantasy Hockey Power-Play Strategy
Important NHL statistic number 1 – more than 21% of every NHL goal is a power-play goal. Important NHL statistic number 2 – each team gets roughly 3.3 power-play chances per game on average throughout the course of the regular season. So how do you use this knowledge to your advantage? As a hockey fan, you know that every team has one or two players that they prefer to have on the ice during every power-play situation. Get these players on your team and you will have more shots on goal, as well as more chances to score or assist someone else who scores. And, since they are shooting against a weakened field, their success rate goes straight up.
Advanced Daily Fantasy Hockey Bankroll Management Technique
The Kelly Criterion is a technique used by professional sports gamblers to dictate the size of their bets. It is predicated on the answer to the question, “How much would I wager if I knew the odds were in my favor?” Understanding the math behind this system requires its own post, but here is all you really need to know. While we discussed above about never betting more than 5% on any given play, the aggressive Kelly Criterion says to bet more in head-to-head, 50/50s and Double Ups, and to bet that much or less in GPPs and larger tournaments. (Fantasy pro tip: In 50/50s and H2H contests, bet approximately 6.7% of your bankroll. Kelly says so. This assumes of course that you have purchased your goalie and forwards first, and done your research.)