Thursday's 7:00 PM Eastern time NHL slate offers no shortage of selection with 18 teams in action. The players below stand out from the competition as the evening's top value plays…
Carter Hutton, STL at COL ($32): Hutton will likely start the second leg of St. Louis' back-to-back set and gets a terrific opportunity to build on his sensational season debut here. He dominated the Rangers on Oct. 10 with a 32-save shutout and will be heavily favored to pick up another victory against an Avalanche team that's been outscored 7-2 in dropping its past two games and is starting to look more like last year's league-worst squad as expected.
GOALIE TO AVOID
Andrei Vasilevskiy, TB at CLS ($31): Vasilevskiy's ridden Tampa Bay's explosive offense to a 5-1-0 record, but his 3.00 GAA and .914 save percentage leave a lot to be desired. The young netminder's downside is extreme on the road against a Columbus team that's already produced three five-goal games in a 5-1-0 start of its own.
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Elias Lindholm, CAR at CGY ($16): Lindholm gets the edge over identically-priced teammate Jordan Staal in this decent matchup because Lindholm's already being trusted with a larger role and is still growing his game at age 22. The fifth overall pick in the 2013 draft is blossoming into an elite two-way forward with one goal, three points and a plus-3 rating through four games. Don't be surprised if Lindholm's price skyrockets before long, so grab him at $16 while you still can.
CENTER TO AVOID
Brock Nelson, NYI and NYR ($18): Nelson's role simply isn't one befitting of an $18 salary, as he's topped 15:00 of ice time only once this season while averaging 13:50 and failing to contribute on the power play up to this point. That last part especially dampens his value against a Rangers team that's killed off just 74.1 percent of opposing power-plays, ranking second-worst in the league.
Brock Boeser, VAN at BOS ($18): Boeser was a healthy scratch in Vancouver's first two games, but has racked up two goals and two assists in three games since. The 20-year-old forward has done nothing but score since briefly cracking the NHL last season with six goals and three assists in 12 career games, so expect him to keep the good times rolling against a Bruins team that's allowed 18 goals in its first five games.
Scott Hartnell, NSH at PHI ($13): Hartnell already has a two-goal performance against the Flyers this season, so expect another strong performance from the veteran power forward against his former team here. He's scored three of his four points on the power play and Philadelphia's 76.0 percent penalty kill should allow Hartnell plenty of opportunities to burn it once again. At just $13, he's a low-risk, high-reward option.
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WINGS TO AVOID
Kyle Palmieri, NJ at OTT ($16): Palmieri's extremely reliant on the power play for his production, as four of his five points this season and 46 of 115 since the start of the 2015-16 campaign have come with the extra man. Converting in such situations will be exceedingly difficult against a Senators penalty kill that's operating at a 94.1 percent clip.
Brian Gibbons, NJ at OTT ($17): Gibbons makes this section for a different reason from his teammate Palmieri. Between his 22 points in 66 NHL games coming into this campaign and season ice time average of 14:40 per game, the 29-year-old career AHLer is unlikely to continue the hot start that's driven his price up to $17, especially against a Senators team that's allowing 1.83 goals per game.
John Klingberg, DAL at ARI ($19): Klingberg is the total package and it's amazing that he can still be had for under $20. After piling up 147 points and a plus-29 rating over 221 games in his first three NHL seasons, the 25-year-old Swede is off to a fantastic start with two goals, three assists and 17 shots through six games. Expect those hefty totals to rise against a Coyotes team that's allowed a league-high 4.17 goals per game.
Oliver Ekman-Larsson, ARI vs. DAL ($14): Ekman-Larsson's minus-10 rating isn't pretty, but his offensive upside is too high to pass up at $14. The Swedish blueliner has scored 72 goals since the start of the 2013-14 campaign, with 39 of those coming on the power play. Dallas' penalty kill has held up so far, but the team's league-worst 73.9 percent mark last season suggests Ekman-Larson could easily realize his offensive potential by potting a goal in this matchup.
DEFENSEMEN TO AVOID
Erik Karlsson, OTT vs. NJ ($27): Karlsson will undoubtedly return to $27 form soon, but he's still finding his bearings after missing his team's first five games while rehabbing a foot injury. He posted a minus-2 rating in 22:25 of ice time in his debut Tuesday against Vancouver and Karlsson's downside is simply too great to justify his current valuation as this slate's most expensive blueliner.
Radko Gudas, PHI at NAS ($16): Gudas is yet to contribute a point in six games this year, which isn't surprising considering he's never topped six goals or 23 points in one season. In addition to a low ceiling due to a lack of offense and low ice time (16:14 per game), Gudas will have a low floor rating-wise against the defending Western Conference champs.