This article is part of our DraftKings NHL series.
It's a quiet NHL schedule Friday with just four games, and only the three evening matchups are included in DraftKings featured contests. Boston is a significant road favorite over Detroit, Vancouver is a small road favorite over Winnipeg, and the Oilers a notable favorites at home against New Jersey. The Canucks and Devils are also both playing their second road game in consecutive nights.
With Vancouver travelling to Winnipeg following a 5-2 loss to Chicago, Hellebuyck's strong current form makes him a solid option. He's saved 82 of 85 shots through his past two outings and sports a .930 save percentage for the campaign. The American backstop has also allowed two goals or fewer in eight of 12 contests.
Despite a respectable .936 save percentage and 1.88 GAA, Mike Smith ($8,100) is just 3-4-1 on the season, as his solid play hasn't been supported enough by the Edmonton offense. This is definitely a favorable setup and schedule spot, though. New Jersey enters scoring a league-low 1.64 goals per 60 minutes on the road this season. Mikko Koskinen ($7,900) is also in play if he receives the starting nod.
Tuukka Rask ($8,300) is an obvious bounce-back candidate after allowing five goals in his most recent start. However, his salary will make your skater decisions more difficult, and could price out the Bruins' No. 1 line.
Even with this being the second leg of a back-to-back road set, Thatcher Demko's ($7,700) makes him an option against Winnipeg. The Jets are 3-4-1 on home ice with a league-low 1.88 goals per game, after all.
Bryan Little's ($3,700) trip to injured reserve projects to split Blake Wheeler ($5,800) and Mark Scheifele ($5,800) up at even strength, and with Vancouver's potential vulnerability Friday, loading up one of them is in play. They entered the 2019-20 campaign with rock-solid 3.19 and 2.91 points per hour marks, respectively, over the previous three seasons, but have combined for just three goals and five points over the past eight games. Look for the lineup shakeup to help.
This salary stands out as a buy-low opportunity for Nico Hischier ($4,500). The third-year center is skating atop the depth chart and has recorded two tallies, three helpers and 14 shots during his four-game point streak. Boston did surrender five goals last time out, too.
Jack Roslovic ($2,600) is projected to skate in a top-six role and receive power-play time Friday, and while he's failed score consistently at the highest level, the 22-year-old forward owns the offensive pedigree to capitalize on his opportunity.
FORWARD LINE STACKS
Boston's No. 1 line continues to score in bunches, and until the combined cap hit makes it nearly impossible to stack them, Patrice Bergeron ($7,800), David Pastrnak ($8,400) and Brad Marchand ($7,700) are foundation pieces. After all, they've combined for 32 goals and 74 points through 15 games this season. The soft matchup only pads the case.
With Zack Kassian ($4,000) helping to bring down the cap hit of Edmonton's No. 1 line, it could be easier to fit Connor McDavid ($7,900), Leon Draisaitl ($7,800) into lineups. The Devils are playing their third road game in four nights and have surrendered 3.79 goals per game this year — third most in the league.
Because of their recent struggles and tough matchup, Dylan Larkin ($5,400), Anthony Mantha ($5,000) and Tyler Bertuzzi ($4,600) have dipped into value territory, and the trio have shown solid chemistry. Dating back to last season, they've clicked for 4.73 goals per hour, including a 6.04 mark through the first six games of 2019-20.
A low-priced trio with upside, Jack Hughes ($4,200), Nikita Gusev ($3,500) and Pavel Zacha ($3,400) scored at five-on-five Thursday, and are talented enough to make an impact in all situations. Hughes in particular is up to four goals and five assists through his past eight outings. Just note that The Devils have been frequently switching up their line combinations during games, so there's no guarantee the trio stick together.
After registering nine points through seven games to start the season, Oscar Klefbom ($5,900) has missed the scoresheet in 10 consecutive outings since. Amazingly, he's still managed to reach double-digit DraftKings points in each of his past five contests by racking up 12 shots and 22 blocks. His peripheral numbers are fantastic, and he remains the quarterback of the No. 1 power-play unit, so Klefbom offers the coveted high-floor, high-ceiling combo.
Just the opposite, Sami Vatanen ($4,600) has been providing solid cross-category numbers through over his past eight contests with three tallies, four helpers, 13 shots and 14 blocks while logging 23:43 of ice time (4:07 with the man advantage). His 9.2 DraftKings points per game also rank third among all New Jersey skaters.
Filip Hronek's ($4,500) numbers don't jump off the page, but his salary is manageable, and the second-year defenseman has collected two goals, three assists, 19 shots and eight blocks while logging big minutes (23:45 with 3:45 on the power play) through his past eight outings. His 1.25 points per hour also rank a respectable 51st among all regular defensemen, so Hronek checks out as a potential contrarian piece in any Red Wings stack.
Here's the obligatory Torey Krug ($5,800) sales pitch. His 2.31 points per 60 minutes pace all regular NHL defensemen over the past three years, and he's collected a goal, nine assists and 23 shots through his past 10 contests. His shot volume, block totals and even-strength minutes trail the blueliners who average the highest point totals in DraftKings settings, but that's mitigated by Krug's salary.
Turning to the Jets, there are a number of options in various price ranges to consider — and they're all priced reasonably. Josh Morrissey ($5,000) has stepped into the go-to role and collected nine points, 32 shots and 12 blocks through his past 12 contests, whereas Neal Pionk's ($4,100) nine points — two goals — through 16 contest don't lag too far behind. Additionally, Nathan Beaulieu ($2,800) will suit up for his second game of the season and has shown flashes of offensive upside throughout his career, and most notably during his 28-point showing during the 2016-17 campaign.