This article is part of our FanDuel NHL series.
This is the final Friday before the NHL playoffs. We have seven teams taking the ice, none of them on a back-to-back. This also happens to include the three lowest-scoring teams. In fact, two of them - the Blue Jackets and Red Wings - are playing each other. And with many teams already out of the playoffs, lineups may be in flux with young players getting opportunities and banged-up veterans sitting out. You can't always predict that ahead of time, of course. Here are some DFS recommendations.
Andrei Vasilevskiy, TAM vs. DAL ($8,600): Vasilevskiy recently got some rest, but returned to beat the Stars in his last start. The Russian has posted a 2.10 GAA and .928 save percentage and is usually a good bet in net. Of course, Vasilveskiy also carries a high salary. That being said, I'm willing to pay that here. The Stars are middling offensively, but have also lost five in a row.
Cam Talbot, MIN vs. ANA ($7,900): Talbot has scuffled a bit of late, but still has a 2.58 GAA and .918 save percentage. And if he wants to right the ship before the playoffs, a home game against the Ducks is a great opportunity to do it as they have only scored 2.19 goals per contest.
Thomas Greiss, DET at CLM ($6,600): I understand if you haven't been paying attention to the Red Wings. I'm a Detroit fan and even I haven't been glued to my TV for most games. As such, you might not realize how hot Greiss has been in goal. Over his last 12, he's managed a 1.62 GAA and .942 save percentage. The Blue Jackets have collapsed down the stretch and rank last in goals per game in April to drop them to an overall average of 2.35.
Elvis Merzlikins, CLM vs. DET ($7,400): Of course, I had to turn this matchup around. Merzlikins comes in with a .916 save percentage, but he's also getting as favorable of a matchup as possible. The Red Wings sit last in the league at 2.16 goals per game and are also tied for last in shots on net at 26.9.
Kirill Kaprizov, MIN vs. ANA ($6,700): Kaprizov is padding his Calder resume with a four-game point streak, not to mention 12 points over his last 10 games to put him up to 26 goals and 47 points on the season. It seems like John Gibson is going to post a .904 save percentage for the second season in a row while the Ducks' team GAA registers at 3.13.
William Karlsson, VGK vs. STL ($5,600): Karlsson has notched a power-play point in back-to-back appearances, giving him eight with the extra man. He's also averaged 2:40 per game on the power play. The Blues maintain a bottom-five penalty kill, so time on the power play could pay off for Wild Bill.
Timo Meier, SAN vs. ARI ($4,600): Meier has had some bad puck luck this season having posted a 6.7 shooting percentage. However, he does have two goals in his last eight and has added two assists during that stretch. The Swiss forward has also started 53.1 percent of his shifts in the offensive zone, second most on the Sharks. The Coyotes, meanwhile, are in the bottom-10 in GAA at 3.11.
LINE STACKS TO CONSIDER
Chaos reigns with the Capitals right now, and I don't just mean whatever Tom Wilson is up to. A lot of players, including Alex Ovechkin and Evgeny Kuznetsov, are day-to-day right now. That being said, the Flyers enter with a 3.60 GAA. No team has been worse defensively or in net. I still want a piece of this matchup, and this is a chance to stack a line and save some salary. Eller is on a bit of a cold streak, but accumulated seven points in six games during an April stretch. Oshie just picked up a hat trick, giving him 21 goals to go with 21 assists. He was also hot when Eller was, but has stayed hot with 15 points in his last 13 outings. Sheary has tallied 13 goals on the year to go along with 32 shots on goal across 13 contests.
The Sharks have struggled with a 3.40 GAA and are one of those teams out of the playoff race that may be looking to get some young players in the lineup. This has meant rookie goalie Josef Korenar getting more time in net who has so far produced a .902 save percentage. I'm going with this trio in part because of their power-play time. Brassard is currently centering Arizona's top unit and has averaged 2:26 per game with the extra man. Kessel has looked better this year with 18 goals and has also recorded 12 power-play points. Keller has perhaps plateaued as a player, but there's nothing wrong with 35 points over 54 games or five of those in his last 10 contests.
John Carlson, WAS vs. PHI ($6,700): Don't worry about Carlson's salary with the Flyers and their 3.60 GAA at the other end of the ice. Washington has something to play for and Philadelphia does not. Carlson has managed an assist in back-to-back games after a two-day absence and now has 44 points on the season to go with 124 shots on goal.
Shea Theodore, VGK vs. STL ($6,600): I mentioned earlier the Blues have a bottom-five penalty kill. With that being the case, I have an eye on Theodore. Sure, he has zero power-play goals this year. On the other hand, he's posted 15 assists with the extra man. Theodore has also notched eight goals in 49 games, so we know lighting the lamp isn't exactly an issue.
Oliver Ekman-Larsson, ARI at SAN ($3,900): I almost recommended Ekman-Larsson the other day, but I didn't. Then he went and scored a goal. I'm not going to make that mistake again. The Swedish defenseman has been more active recently with 13 shots on goal over his last three games. Ekman-Larsson also has 14 power-play points in 44 contests. And don't forget the fact the Sharks have a 3.40 GAA.
Conor Timmins, COL at LOS ($3,500): With Samuel Girard banged up, Timmins is getting an opportunity to see some more ice time of late. Over his last four, he's averaged 17:22 in ice time and has also produced two assists. On the flip side, Cal Petersen has struggled with a 3.26 GAA and .900 save percentage in his last 14 appearances.