This article is part of our FanDuel NHL series.
Thursday brings with it a big ol' slate of NHL games – a cool dozen of 'em. There are sure to be a lot of fine choices out there, but I'm concentrating my selections in a few places: Florida (hosting a terrible Arizona team), Edmonton (on the road against the league's favorite midday snack, the Avs) and Minnesota (hosting a Philadelphia club that's lost two-thirds of its road games). Let's get started with the picks.
Devan Dubnyk, MIN vs. PHI ($8,500): Yes, Dubs has been showing cracks in the hull for a while now, but he just bounced back with a win over the Sharks, and Minnesota is a great home team (24-10-1 this year). The Flyers, as I alluded to above, are just 12-20-4 on the road; they're also in a big tie for the fifth-fewest road goals in the league, and they've got the fourth-worst shooting percentage. Oh, and they're starting Steve Mason, who's 2-4-0 with a 2.84 GAA and .897 save percentage in his last six outings. Dubnyk shouldn't be the 10th-most-expensive projected starter Thursday.
Vincent Trocheck, FLA vs. ARI ($5,600): As a volume shooter (209 on the year) with a major role that includes power-play time, Trocheck should be more expensive than this in the first place; his average of 12.6 FanDuel points per game is higher than anyone's until you get up to Nazem Kadri, who costs $6,400. Against this already attractive backdrop, we have a cake matchup against the Coyotes, who own the league's fourth-worst goals per game (3.16) and have allowed the second-most shots per game at 33.8. If I could put Trocheck in my lineup twice, I would.
Tyler Bozak, TOR vs. NJD ($5,500): He's ostensibly on the third line, but Bozak still sees a strong complement of minutes, and he's been putting up points quite steadily – with 49 on the year, he's already tied his career high, and 11 of those have come in the last 12 games. Bozak doesn't pour a lot of shots on net typically, but he does enjoy plenty of scoring opportunities, including second-unit power play time. The matchup checks out, too, as the Devils (a bad road team) are starting backup goalie Keith Kinkaid.
Patrick Maroon, EDM at COL ($5,500): Life is good alongside Connor McDavid on Edmonton's first line, especially lately – Maroon has racked up four goals and three helpers in his last five games. His power-play time has been pretty steady lately, but Maroon may not even need the assistance of the man advantage to hit the scoresheet as a byproduct of McDavid skating circles around the sad-sack Avalanche.
Jason Zucker, MIN vs. PHI ($4,400): Perhaps Zucker's price is deflated because he's been so cold lately (one point in his last six games), but there's a lot to like here. The 25-year-old winger is in the midst of his best season yet, and although FanDuel doesn't count his plus-30 rating, he's in fine position to get back on the right track against the suspect Philly defense. As mentioned, Mason has been terrible, while Zucker is a regular on the top line. If only he could find his way into some power-play action, he could really take off as a star of the league. Maybe next year for that.
Artemi Panarin, CHI vs. DAL ($7,100): He's certainly not cheap, but in Panarin we have a player who provides exactly what you're paying for: steady production you can expect to continue against a Dallas team that sports some of the league's worst defense and goaltending. Panarin just missed the scoresheet in Tuesday's tilt, but he hasn't gone consecutive games without a point since mid-February.
Shea Weber, MON vs. CAR ($5,400): This is a very friendly price for one of the league's top blueliners, so if you have some money left over after filling your goalies and forwards out, here's a good way to spend it. Weber has a lovely matchup at home against the Hurricanes and their weak goaltending, and he's a regular contributor in both shots and blocked shots, which gives him an excellent fantasy floor with big-time upside.
Ryan Ellis, NAS vs. CGY ($4,800): Ellis catches Brian Elliott and the Flames exactly where you want them: on their heels thanks to the end of a recent winning streak, and on the road. Ellis himself has also heated up rapidly in the past couple games, racking up a two-assist effort followed by a two-goal effort, and we've been able to count on him to put at least two shots on net every game and usually block a couple, too. As with Weber, this is exactly the kind of floor-upside combo that plays beautifully in DFS.