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Fantasy buzz: Bjork thrives on top line; Schneider injured

Bruins rookie benefits from Bergeron's return; replacement options for Devils goaltender

by Pete Jensen @NHLJensen / NHL.com Senior Fantasy Editor

All season long, NHL.com's fantasy hockey staff will have you covered with daily lineup news, production trends and injury notes from around the League. We will identify how these developments affect fantasy owners in year-long (Yahoo) and daily (DraftKings) formats.

 

6 p.m.

DraftKings advice for Friday

All season long, NHL.com's fantasy staff will provide daily picks for DraftKings NHL contests. This article includes expensive and value plays and can be used as a basis for your roster decision-making.

READ: Fantasy picks: Canadiens have contrarian upside | Projected starting goalies

 

3:30 p.m.
Devils place Schneider on injured reserve

The New Jersey Devils have placed goaltender Cory Schneider (lower body) on injured reserve Friday, but their upcoming break in their schedule could potentially lessen the blow.

Schneider, who left the Devils' 5-4 overtime win against the Ottawa Senators on Thursday, is the latest fantasy-relevant goaltender to sustain an injury, joining Tuukka Rask (Boston Bruins) and Marc-Andre Fleury (Vegas Golden Knights), who are out with concussions. The Devils will start backup Keith Kinkaid when they host the San Jose Sharks on Friday (7 p.m. ET; MSG+, NBCSCA, NHL.TV), but are fortunate to have a six-day break between games, giving them added time and roster flexibility as Schneider recovers.

READ: Full list of projected starting goaltenders

There's no question Schneider is the most valuable player on the Devils roster for the rest of the season, but their offense has been one of the biggest surprises of the fantasy season to this point. They rank second in the NHL in goals per game (4.29) and tied for seventh in power-play efficiency (26.7 percent).

If you have an IR or IR+ spot to stash Schneider in your league, Kinkaid (11 percent owned) could fill a short-term gap, especially if the goal support continues. He's 2-0-0 with a .950 save percentage this season. He is priced at $7,700 in DraftKings against the Sharks, who are allowing the ninth-most DFS points to opposing goalies this season.

But with the Devils having a lengthy break coming up, outside options like Michal Neuvirth (PHI; 13 percent owned) and Malcolm Subban (VGK; 32 percent) are more appealing. In shallow leagues, consider goaltenders like Connor Hellebuyck (WPG; 55 percent owned) or Jaroslav Halak (NYI; 60 percent).

 

Bergeron returns for Bruins, sparks rookie Bjork

Boston Bruins center Patrice Bergeron thrived in his season debut Thursday, scoring four points (one goal, three assists) with a plus-2, two power-play points and six shots on goal in a 6-3 win against the Vancouver Canucks. He had missed their first five games because of a lower-body injury.

Bergeron's return had a sizable impact on rookie forward Anders Bjork (LW, 6 percent), who had two goals, one assist, a plus-2, one PPP and four SOG on the top line with Bergeron and Brad Marchand. Bjork, 21, also played 2:47 on the second power-play unit. He has five points (three goals, two assists) and two PPP in six games this season and is certainly worth adding in deeper formats. Keep him on your watch list in standard leagues.

Video: VAN@BOS: Bjork nets a heavy slapper on the power play

 

12 p.m.
Mailbag: Sergachev appealing option after breakout game

Every Friday during the season, NHL.com will answer your fantasy mailbag questions. Whether you're in a year-long league or play DFS, we'll answer the most relevant questions based on Yahoo transaction trends, DraftKings value and any other developments (production, lineup, injuries) around the League. Send your questions to @NHLJensen.

Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Mikhail Sergachev (18 percent owned) scored the first two goals of his NHL career against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Thursday, and is quickly becoming a fantasy commodity on the waiver wire.

The rookie now has six points (two goals, four assists) and 15 shots on goal in eight games. For more on his fantasy value, check out our fantasy mailbag.

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