This article is part of our DraftKings NHL series.
Wednesday's NHL slate begins at 8:00 PM Eastern time and features four games. The rescheduled Ducks-Blues game will also be played tonight, but it won't be part of DraftKings' contests. Below, you'll find an overview of the matchups and suggested options for crafting an effective lineup.
The Rangers-Avalanche game features plenty of firepower on both sides, while Jets-Oilers is a clash of top-heavy teams with stars worth paying up for. Meanwhile, the Blackhawks and Kings will look to capitalize on visits from a pair of underwhelming opponents in the Sharks and Senators, respectively.
Jonathan Quick ($7,900) has caught fire out of nowhere for the Kings, going 5-0-1 in his last six starts while allowing a total of four goals in the five wins. He gets a nice opportunity to keep rolling with the Senators' bottom-10 offense in town for Ottawa's second game in as many nights.
Corey Crawford ($8,000) has suffered consecutive tough-luck losses while allowing two goals in each, but he's still 4-2-0 in his last six starts with 13 goals allowed over that span. Chicago's netminder should continue his strong stretch at home against a Sharks team that ranks in the bottom five offensively with 2.58 goals per game.
It will be interesting to see which goalie Edmonton tabs for this home start against Winnipeg's middling offense. Mike Smith ($8,100) looked like he had established himself as the starter, but the pendulum has swung back Mikko Koskinen's ($8,100) way recently. Koskinen has gone 2-0-1 in his last four appearances (three starts), stopping 142 of 147 shots along the way for a sparkling .966 save percentage.
Patrick Kane ($7,900) is in the midst of another fantastic season, as he sports a 31-51-82 line through 69 games. He should be the best player on the ice for either team with the Sharks in town, and Kane has terrific upside considering San Jose's allowing 3.17 goals per game.
Mika Zibanejad ($8,200) is the league's hottest goal-scorer. He's potted 10 in the past five games and has been held without a goal only once in his last 12 contests. If you don't have the funds for Zibanejad or simply want to stack Rangers, linemate Pavel Buchnevich ($4,900) is an excellent alternative/addition, as he has a six-game point streak working ahead of the Rangers' trio to Colorado.
Timo Meier ($5,700) has put together an extended hot streak that's featured a 5-10-15 line in his last 16 games. He should continue to lead the Sharks' offense against an aggressively average Blackhawks club.
With Blake Wheeler pushed up to a top-line wing spot, Cody Eakin ($2,600) is getting a great opportunity to center Winnipeg's second line. He's taken advantage of the opportunity with a goal and two assists over the past two games and almost certainly won't stay this cheap much longer.
FORWARD LINE STACKS
Avalanche vs. Rangers
Colorado's top players are primed for success against a Rangers team that has allowed 26 goals in its last six games and is finishing up a back-to-back set. There are questions about whether MacKinnon will suit up after exiting the team's previous game early due to a lower-body injury, but he'll be a can't-miss option if he's out there. MacKinnon had a three-game multi-point streak going prior to the one in which he got hurt and owns a robust 35-58-93 line on the season. Landeskog is playing his best hockey of the season with a 5-8-13 line over his past nine games, and the affordable Namestnikov will be motivated to produce against the team with which he started the season.
Kings vs. Senators
This is a nearly ideal matchup for Los Angeles' top scorers, as the Senators are allowing the second-most goals per game in the league and playing their second west coast road game in as many nights. Kopitar leads the team in both goals (21) and points (62). Iafallo and Brown have potted 17 goals apiece while ranking second (43) and third (35) on the team in points, respectively. This trio has performed especially well over the past five games, with Kopitar posting a 3-3-6 line, Iafallo at 2-3-5 and Brown adding a 4-3-7 line.
Oilers vs. Jets
After briefly being broken up, it looks like this line will be reunited and counted upon for most of Edmonton's offense with Connor McDavid's status in question due to an illness. Draisaitl continues to run away with the league points lead, sitting 14 clear of second-place McDavid with a 43-67-110 line. Nugent-Hopkins has been held off the board only twice in his last 16 games, producing a Draisaitl-esque 8-16-24 line over that stretch. Yamamoto got a late start to his NHL season but has flirted with a point-per-game pace since, with an 11-14-25 line in 26 appearances.
Drew Doughty ($5,400) went through an extended offensive drought, but he's found his game recently with four helpers in the past four games. The 2016 Norris Trophy winner has a 7-27-34 line in 66 games overall, and he should build on his recent momentum with the surging Kings set to host a weak Ottawa team.
Adam Fox ($4,100) isn't a household name yet, but it won't be long until he is. The rookie out of Harvard is probably the best two-way blueliner on the Rangers already, and he's only getting better. Fox has an 8-32-40 line overall, which includes a 2-7-9 line in his past eight games. Lock him in against an Avalanche team that's been susceptible to strong performances from opposing defensemen.
Speaking of defensemen with strong two-way ability, Ryan Graves ($4,700) only provides modest scoring (9-17-26), but he's a key cog for the Avalanche thanks to his stat-stuffing ability. Expect Graves to see all the ice time he can handle as Colorado tries to match him up against the top-heavy Rangers' best forwards, which will give him a chance to pile up shots and blocks. With 18 shots and 21 blocks in the past nine games, Graves has carved out a high floor for himself.