This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Hockey series.
Thursday is the start of the NFL draft, so many sports fans may be occupied with that. However, before you sit down to see the Jacksonville Jaguars take Trevor Lawrence, why not put together your DFS hockey roster in hopes of glory (and a bit of cash)? There are 10 games on the NHL slate, and here are some players to target, and to avoid, for your daily fantasy lineup.
Tuukka Rask, BOS vs. BUF ($35): Jeremy Swayman is back on Boston's taxi squad, though that is always amendable, but right now it looks like the team is ready to go back to Rask as its primary netminder. The Finn only has a .915 save percentage, but thanks to some strong defense he has a 2.29 GAA. Buffalo has only managed 2.38 goals per contest, and its roster is decidedly less talented than it was when the season began.
GOALIE TO AVOID
Semyon Varlamov, NYI at NYR ($31): Varlamov was out for the Islanders' last game, but there is some speculation that was as much a night of rest as anything. He and his .926 save percentage are likely to be available Thursday. However, being on the road against the Rangers seems tough, as the Rangers have averaged 3.32 goals per game. In April the Blueshirts have been even hotter, having managed 3.67 goals per contest.
David Krejci, BOS vs. BUF ($17): Krejci has had Taylor Hall added to his wing, and now the Czech pivot has nine points in his last nine games. Sure, four of those games were against the Sabres, but guess what? This game is against the Sabres too, and they still have a 3.42 GAA.
CENTER TO AVOID
Brayden Point, TAM vs. DAL ($26): Point has kept on trucking even though he no longer has Steven Stamkos or Nikita Kucherov available on his wing. Even so, it is certainly less impressive to have Alex Barre-Boulet on your flank, and Point has a hefty salary. On top of that, the Stars have a 2.51 GAA and have allowed only 26.9 shots on net per contest.
Johnny Gaudreau, CGY at EDM ($19): Gaudreau has a five-game point streak, and he's notched a point in seven of his last eight contests. Edmonton is on the second night of a back-to-back, having played in Winnipeg on Wednesday. On the other hand, Calgary is rested. Sure, Mike Smith was saved for this game, but I still like Gaudreau at this salary.
Yegor Sharangovich, NJD vs. PHI ($17): As the Devils figure out their future, a player like Sharangovich is getting as opportunity to skate on their top line. He's also averaged 2:27 per game with the extra man over his last 10 contests. In April the 22-year-old has 12 points in 15 games, and the Flyers have a 3.53 GAA, now highest in the NHL.
WINGS TO AVOID
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, EDM vs. CGY ($20): Nugent-Hopkins has returned from an injury absence and gotten back on the scoresheet a few times already. However, as I just noted the Oilers are on the second leg of a back-to-back while the Flames are not. The Flames are middle-of-the-pack in GAA and penalty-kill percentage, and they've also allowed only 28.6 shots on goal per game. In addition to all that, Jacob Markstrom has a 1.77 GAA and .924 save percentage in his last eight starts.
Jakub Vrana, DET at CAR ($19): Your interest may have been piqued when Vrana scored four goals in a game against the Stars. Don't get too excited though. The Wings no longer have Dylan Larkin or Tyler Bertuzzi available, leaving Vrana with less talent around him. It'll be hard for him to get anything going with the Wings' current roster, especially against a Hurricanes team with a 2.39 GAA.
Ivan Provorov, PHI at NJD ($17): Provorov has tallied 25 points in 49 games, including 10 with the extra man. Meanwhile, the Devils have the league's worst penalty kill. The defenseman's power-play time may be down from last season, but you don't need a ton of time to make good against the worst penalty kill out there.
Keith Yandle, FLA at CHI ($12): The Blackhawks have allowed 33.0 shots on net per game, second most in the NHL. Aaron Ekblad was the most prolific shooter on the Panthers blue line, but he's out for the year. For his part, Yandle has put 102 shots on net in 51 games. Plus, he's averaged 4:23 per game with the extra man and the Blackhawks have a bottom-six penalty kill.
DEFENSEMEN TO AVOID
John Carlson, WAS vs. PIT ($23): Carlson has 10 goals on the season, but zero in his last 12 games. He also has zero points in his last four contests. Sure, those games were against the Bruins and the Islanders, but the Penguins can be just as tough. Over his last 17 games, Tristan Jarry has a 2.29 GAA and .925 save percentage.
John Klingberg, DAL at TAM ($17): Klingberg was hot before missing a couple games with injury, and when he returned he didn't register a point or a shot on net. At some point he will probably be just fine, but this is a rough matchup for the Swede. Andrei Vasilevskiy has a 2.15 GAA and .927 save percentage for the Lightning.