This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Hockey series.
It's a busy nine-game slate in the NHL on Monday, and daily players will want to check in on the respective motivations for each team. The playoff bracket is almost set in stone. Additionally, there are a lot of close games projected by the odds, as the only notable favorites are the Jets and Bruins. Here are picks and pans at each position ahead of Monday's action.
All statistics from Natural Stat Trick and Hockey Reference.
Laurent Brossoit, WPG vs. VAN ($30): The Jets can pull closer to clinching the third seed in the North Division with a win Monday, and Brossoit has been solid all season in a backup role with a .920 save percentage and 2.36 GAA through 13 appearances. It's also a soft matchup with Vancouver entering in a 2-8 stretch with just 23 goals for.
GOALIE TO AVOID
Juuse Saros, NSH vs. CAR ($37): Look for a rebound showing from Carolina after Saros and the Predators topped the Hurricanes 3-1 on Saturday. The Finnish netminder had allowed three goals in each of his previous two starts, and the Hurricanes rank fourth in Corsi For percentage and second in power-play percentage for the season.
Sean Couturier, PHI vs. NJ ($20): This could be a sneaky spot for Couturier, and his salary is manageable. He's also gone 21 straight games without a multi-point showing, so there could be some positive offensive regression ahead. Additionally, while New Jersey has been in good form of late with an active 5-2 run, they've still allowed the fifth most goals per game and have the worst penalty-kill percentage in the league.
CENTER TO AVOID
Brayden Point, TB at FLA ($24): The Panthers have limited Point to just 12 shots through six games this season, and the 25-year-old center projects to see a lot of five-on-five ice time matched up against Aleksander Barkov ($31). Barkov drives possession with a 59.4 Corsi For percentage, and the Panthers have surrendered the eighth fewest five-on-five goals per 60 minutes in the league.
Kyle Connor, WPG vs. VAN ($23): As noted, the Canucks aren't in top form, and they've surrendered the sixth most goals per game while sporting a 23rd-ranked 77.6 penalty-kill percentage. Connor needs the plus-matchup, too. The three-time, 30-goal scorer is reeling along a seven-game point drought with a minus-8 rating. Look for statistical correction Monday.
Kailer Yamamoto, EDM at MON ($10): Skating with Leon Draisaitl ($34) and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins ($22) at five-on-five positions Yamamoto to succeed. The trio have clicked for 4.93 goals and 13.75 high-danger scoring chances per 60 minutes over the past two seasons, and Yamamoto is also sporting a contest-minimum salary. The Canadiens have also lost three straight with 13 goals against.
WINGS TO AVOID
Mark Stone, VGK vs. COL ($32): With linemate Max Pacioretty ($34) potentially out with an undisclosed injury, Stone's fantasy value takes a notable hit. Stone has just a single assist through the past three games, and he was held without a shot in Saturday's win over the Blues. Colorado is also a daunting matchup, as the Avalanche pace the league in Corsi For percentage and have allowed the fifth fewest goals per game.
Filip Forsberg, NSH vs. CAR ($21): Another Predator to consider fading in Game 2 of this mini-series, Forsberg was held to just two shot attempts during Saturday's 3-1 win over Carolina. Additionally, he's missed the scoresheet in three of four games since returning from an upper-body injury. The Hurricanes have also allowed the third fewest goals per game and rank third in penalty-kill percentage, so it's not a favorable matchup.
Ivan Provorov, PHI vs. NJ ($18): As noted, the Devils could be ripe for a letdown showing, and Provorov is a cost-effective target considering his cross-category production and significant role. The 24-year-old blueliner has logged 25:02 of ice time per game this season and receives consistent power-play time. He's also picked up five points through seven games against New Jersey this season.
Drew Doughty, LA vs. STL ($12): With just three assists through his past 15 games, Doughty is reeling along one of the worst stretches of his sterling career. Still, St. Louis has nothing to play for with their seeding in the West Division locked in, and Doughty is still logging huge minutes with 26:29 of ice time per game, including 3:23 quarterbacking the No. 1 power-play unit. This salary doesn't break the bank, either.
DEFENSE TO AVOID
Dougie Hamilton, CAR at NSH ($27): There's always risk in fading Hamitlon, but he's now missed the scoresheet in seven of his past 10 games. It's probably wise to allocate your cap space elsewhere. Just note, he does rank seventh in points and second in shot attempts per 60 minutes among regular defensemen this season.
Alex Pietrangelo, VGK vs. COL ($20): Expect Pietrangelo to spend the majority of his five-on-five ice time lined up opposite Nathan MacKinnon ($34), Mikko Rantanen ($34) and Gabriel Landeskog ($29) on Monday, which significantly limits the defenseman's upside. After all, the MacKinnon line boasts a dominant 66.8 Corsi For percentage at five-on-five. MacKinnon is questionable for the contest with a lower-body injury, though.