This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Hockey series.
It's a busy eight-game night in the NHL on Monday, and there are a number of significant favorites on the docket. Florida, Dallas, Vegas and Calgary are all receiving huge chalk, whereas the Lightning-Hurricanes and Oilers-Canadiens games are both projected to be close. Here are picks and pans at each position for Monday's contests.
All statistics from Natural Stat Trick and Hockey Reference.
Sergei Bobrovsky, FLA vs. CLS ($34): View this as a bounce-back spot for Bobrovsky. While he's coming off a road win over the Lightning, he's also surrendered 10 goals through his past three starts with just the lone victory. A date with the Blue Jackets should prove to be a favorable matchup, too. Columbus has scored the fourth fewest goals per game this season and enters with an active 2-10-2 record. If Chris Driedger ($38) receives the starting nod, he's definitely in play with a rock-solid .927 save percentage and 2.09 GAA for the campaign.
GOALIE TO AVOID
Petr Mrazek, CAR at TB ($36): As noted, there are enough mismatches on the docket Monday to steer clear of Mrazek. The Lightning have scored the third most goals per game in the league this season and boast a fifth-ranked 25.2 power-play percentage. The same pause is recommended should Alex Nedeljkovic ($34) or James Reimer ($29) start for Carolina.
Roope Hintz, DAL vs. DET ($20): This is a reasonable salary to target Hintz at. He's in the midst of a breakout campaign and currently riding a five-game point streak consisting of two tallies and nine helpers. Additionally, the matchup is soft with Detroit allowing a healthy 3.13 goals per game and ranking 23rd in penalty-kill percentage.
CENTER TO AVOID
Brayden Point, TB vs. CAR ($25): The 25-year-old center's recent production has been solid but unspectacular, as Point has missed the scoresheet in eight of his past 13 games. Additionally, this could prove to be a tough matchup, as the Hurricanes have surrendered the fourth fewest goals per game in the league and have the fifth best penalty-kill percentage.
Johnny Gaudreau, CGY vs. OTT ($17): Even with Ottawa's competitive 6-6-3 recent stretch, the Senators have still surrendered the most goals per game in the league. Gaudreau has also found some offensive form of late with five points through his past four outings. The salary is manageable, too.
Nikita Gusev, FLA vs. CLS ($11): Projected to stick on the No. 1 line with Aleksander Barkov ($32), Gusev warrants attention as a low-salary target. He picked up a helper last time out, and while his season went south in a hurry in New Jersey, there's significant offensive upside here. The 28-year-old Russian recorded a respectable 44 points in his debut season last year, after all. As noted, the Blue Jackets are in poor form and have surrendered the sixth most goals per game in the league this season, too.
WINGS TO AVOID
Tyler Toffoli, MON at EDM ($23): It's been a hit-or-miss stretch for Toffoli, and he's posted a minus-6 rating through his past six contests and only found the scoresheet once. However, he's still sporting an unsustainably high 17.4 shooting percentage for the campaign, so further statistical correction shouldn't surprise.
Andrei Svechnikov, CAR at TB ($21): Puck luck has turned in Svechnikov's favor of late, as he's found the back of the net in consecutive games, and his shooting percentage is up to 9.9 for the campaign. It will be tough to make it three in a row with the Lightning allowing just 2.59 goals per game and sporting a respectable 82.8 penalty-kill percentage.
Shea Theodore, VGK vs. SJ ($24): With a fifth-ranked 2.22 points and second-ranked 17.28 shot attempts per 60 minutes among regular defensemen, Theodore is one of the most reliable blueline options. He's also in high-end form with four assists, 16 shots and a plus-6 rating through his past four outings. San Jose has surrendered the fourth most goals per game in the league, too.
John Klingberg, DAL vs. DET ($19): This is a reasonable salary to target the power-play quarterback at. Klingberg boasts a four-game point streak consisting of a goal, four assists, 10 shots, four blocks and a plus-6 rating, which highlights his cross-category production. Plus, as noted, the Red Wings aren't an opponent to steer clear of.
DEFENSEMEN TO AVOID
Darnell Nurse, EDM vs. MON ($23): Montreal is one of the best five-on-five teams in the league with a second-ranked Corsi For percentage and the third fewest five-on-five goals allowed per 60 minutes, so spending up for Nurse is a little risky. After all, he doesn't skate with the No.1 power-play unit and has only found the scoresheet once through his past seven games.
Brent Burns, SJ at VGK ($20): The veteran defenseman remains a high-volume shooter and has a respectable 26 points through – games for the campaign. However, this is a tough matchup with Vegas allowing the fewest goals per game and ranking second in penalty-kill percentage. Additionally, the Golden Knights have held Burns to just seven shots through five meetings this year.