Henrik Lundqvist, NYR vs. SJ ($7,300) – At no point have the Sharks looked like Cup contenders this season, just one summer after making the final. After a tough start to the season, Lundqvist is starting to look like the King of old, stealing a win against the Predators and posting a save percentage of at least .900 in five of his last six starts, with the only blemish coming in a one-goal loss to the mighty Penguins.
Anze Kopitar, LA at TOR ($6,700) – There was a time when Kopitar was considered the best two-way player in the league before his numbers started to dip, but with 11 points in seven games to start the season, he’s benefiting from a fresh start under a new head coach. His chemistry with Dustin Brown has been rekindled, and Alex Iafallo adds some creativity to the Kings’ top line. Kopitar already has four multi-point games this season, and the Leafs have managed to keep their opponents under three goals just once this season.
Kevin Hayes, NYR vs. SJ ($4,000) – After recording just one assist in his first four games, Hayes has scored three goals and an assist in his past five games. He’s a bit of a slow starter, but he was excellent in the Rangers’ most recent win against the Predators, scoring the game-winning goal. He’s on a two-game goal streak and the Sharks will likely be without the services of Paul Martin (ankle).
Tyler Toffoli, LA at TOR ($5,200) – He had a three-game point streak snapped against Columbus, but still managed to get four shots on goal. After a tough 2016-17 season Toffoli’s on track for a bounce-back campaign with five points in seven games, and the Kings are playing at a much quicker pace that helps open up the ice. Turnovers have been a problem for the Leafs, but they’ll play fast anyway, which means there could be plenty of scoring opportunities.
Connor Brown, TOR vs. LA ($4,500) – He’s moved up the depth chart and playing alongside Tyler Bozak and James van Riemsdyk, and is currently riding a three-game point streak. The hard-nosed winger is a consistent contributor for the Leafs; he’s the type of player who’s impact on the ice doesn’t always show up on the scoresheet, but he’s picking up the occasional point with better linemates. He’s also capable of blocking shots, so if his scoring streak doesn’t continue he may contribute in other ways.
Tomas Hertl, SJ at NYR ($4,300) – Outside of Mika Zibanejad and Kevin Hayes, the Rangers don’t really have any other dependable centers, which is a potential area of weakness Peter DeBoer can exploit. If the Sharks spread out all of their centers, that could potentially free up some easier matchups for Hertl, who’s scored three points in his past three games.
Drew Doughty, LA at TOR ($6,200) – On a night that doesn’t have a lot of marquee defensemen playing, Doughty’s the best blueliner to step onto the ice Monday. His incredible skating ability will come in handy against the fast and talented Leafs, and Doughty’s ability to freewheel and generate speed through the neutral zone might be difficult for a relatively inexperienced Leafs squad to contain. The Kings haven’t looked this good in a while, and Doughty’s play – six points in his past five games – is a big reason for that. The Kings are hungry and they’re showing it.
Brady Skjei, NYR vs. SJ ($3,300) – He played just 13 minutes against the Predators but managed to block six shots in limited ice time, and other than Ryan McDonagh is perhaps the most versatile of the Rangers’ defensemen. He can make a difference at both ends of the ice due to his superior skating, and with Lundqvist showing some rust early in the season, he’s been tasked with blocking a lot of shots. The Sharks average more than 32 per game, so Skjei might have to replicate his performance against them.