This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Hockey series.
Wednesday's NHL slate begins at 7:00 PM Eastern time and features six games. Below, you'll find an overview of the matchups and suggested options for crafting an effective lineup.
Even with their team finishing a back-to-back set, Lightning players figure to be this slate's most popular picks against the lowly Devils. On the more well-rested side, Colorado's top players should thrive against the defensively challenged Panthers. The other obviously exploitable team in this slate is Los Angeles, so visiting Canucks players should be quite popular as well.
Curtis McElhinney ($7,900) is expected to start for Tampa Bay after Andrei Vasilevskiy got the nod Tuesday at Madison Square Garden. The veteran backup is still in search of his first win with Tampa Bay, but McElhinney has a robust .915 save percentage through three starts and will face a Devils team that's been outscored 34-22 while winning only twice through nine games.
Minnesota is the other bottom-five offense in this slate, along with New Jersey. With the Wild finishing a back-to-back, St. Louis' Jordan Binnington ($8,200) should stand tall at home against this Central Division rival.
If you're looking to go cheap in net, Darcy Kuemper is a strong choice at just $7,400. The Coyotes netminder has a sparkling 1.87 GAA and .933 save percentage, and he'll be at home against a Canadiens team that's likely to come down to earth offensively, as Montreal's surprisingly scoring 3.64 goals per game after averaging a middling 3.00 last season.
Injuries to two first-line players have created a cascading effect down the Avalanche's lineup, with Nazem Kadri sliding up to the top line and Tyson Jost ($3,900) subsequently sliding up to the second line. The 21-year-old pivot should benefit from the increased offensive responsibility and ice time that comes with skating in a top-six role, so grab Jost before his price starts to climb.
This is a good buy-low opportunity on Cam Atkinson ($6,200). The Blue Jackets winger has been snakebitten with only three goals on 45 shots, but that 6.7 percent rate is due to rise considering Atkinson is a career 11.7 percent shooter and converted at a 13.9 percent rate during last season's 41-goal campaign. With Columbus catching the Oilers on their second road game in as many nights, this could be just the opportunity Atkinson needs to reverse his poor shooting luck.
Zack Kassian ($4,100) is a threat to mark the scoresheet every night as long as he's skating on a line with Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl. The affordable winger has eight points in 13 games and has a nice opportunity to build on that total against a Blue Jackets team that's been outscored 39-30 in its first 11 games.
Minnesota is expected to start Devan Dubnyk (3.92 GAA, .880 save percentage) in net for the second game of a back-to-back, which is music to the Blues' ears. Sammy Blais ($3,700) in particular is primed to provide strong bang for the buck, as he's expected to fill the top-line vacancy created by Vladimir Tarasenko's shoulder injury if Blais can overcome an undisclosed injury of his own. The 23-year-old winger has chipped in three goals and two assists through five games.
FORWARD LINE STACKS
Canucks at Kings
This line consists of Vancouver's three top point-scorers. Pettersson has a 3-11-14 line through 11 games, and the stud sophomore shouldn't have trouble topping a point per game after logging 66 points in 71 appearances as a rookie. Miller has a team-high six goals among his 13 points, and Boeser's on pace to top 55 points for the third consecutive season with a 4-6-10 line. These guys should thrive against a Kings team that's surrendering a league-high 4.08 goals per game.
Avalanche vs. Panthers
Colorado's missing two-thirds of its lethal top line with Mikko Rantanen and Gabriel Landeskog both sidelined by lower-body injuries, but MacKinnon's good enough to drive the offense on his own with a 6-9-15 line through 11 games. Kadri and Donskoi have seven points apiece and nine points between them, and that production has come playing alongside talent inferior to MacKinnon. The visiting Panthers have been among the league's five most generous teams, surrendering 3.75 goals per game.
Lightning at Devils
This top line features two of the 14 players who scored over 90 points last season in Point (92) and Kucherov (128). Those two guys have been less prolific to start the year but still have a combined 18 points — Kucherov's at 4-7-11 in 11 appearances and Point's at 3-4-7 in eight games. Palat's added a 3-2-5 line and has a trio of 50-point seasons under his belt.
Alex Goligoski ($4,400) leads the Coyotes with four power-play points, and he gets a great opportunity to build on that total at home against the league's second-worst penalty kill. Montreal has killed off just 68.6 percent of penalties through 11 games — only the idle Jets have been worse.
Quinn Hughes ($4,700) was drafted seventh overall in 2018 to be a difference-maker offensively, and he's been just that with 10 points in his first 16 NHL games. His price hasn't caught up to Hughes' offensive talent yet, so lock the 20-year-old blueliner in with confidence against the lowly Kings.
If Colorado finds the offensive success expected against the Panthers, Cale Makar ($5,100) is likely to be heavily involved. The 21-year-old blueliner has 10 points in 11 games, and he's showing no signs of slowing down with an active four-game point streak going. Lock him in at only $5,100 while you still can.
Victor Hedman exited Tuesday's 4-1 loss to the Rangers early due to an injury, and his absence should free up more offensive opportunities for Mikhail Sergachev ($4,000). Sergachev has already been logging power-play time and has seven points on the season, so he has the skills to capitalize on any potential increase in role.