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Fantasy buzz: Krejci relevant again after Nash trade

Bruins center scores hat trick, productive in March; Panthers goalies worth owning with favorable schedule; Murray skates for Penguins

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.

 

MORE FANTASY COVERAGE: Top 100 'F' | Top 50 'D' | Top 25 'G' | Projected lineups

 

Krejci back on fantasy radar after Nash trade, hat trick

Boston Bruins center David Krejci is making a strong case for fantasy ownership since they acquired Rick Nash from the New York Rangers on Sunday. Krejci scored a hat trick, including two power-play goals, against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Thursday, giving him four points (three goals, one assist) and six SOG in his past three games.

Krejci (24 percent owned, 239th in Yahoo) is not only a replacement option for injured center Patrice Bergeron but also worth considering in standard leagues given the Bruins' offensive prowess (3.29 goals per game, 4th in NHL), heavy schedule during the fantasy championship (eight games in final two weeks, T-2nd) and his spot on Nash's line at even strength. Krejci, who also plays on the second power-play unit with rookie defenseman Charlie McAvoy, is a strong performer in his NHL career during March (119 points in 144 games; 0.83 per game).

Video: PIT@BOS: Krejci tallies his fourth career hat trick

Nash (LW/RW, 52 percent, 189th in Yahoo) is also worth adding in most formats after combining for three points (two goals, one assist), one power-play point and 15 SOG in three games since the trade. Nash is playing on the first power-play unit with forwards Brad Marchand, David Pastrnak, David Backes and defenseman Torey Krug and could remain there once Bergeron returns. Backes moved up to that unit to replace Bergeron, and rookie Danton Heinen was a healthy scratch Thursday.

 

Murray skates for Penguins; depth goaltenders struggling

Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender Matt Murray skated Friday after sustaining a concussion at practice Monday. He remains out indefinitely and will not play against the New York Islanders on Saturday (5 p.m. ET; ATTSN-PT, MSG+, NHL.TV), but this is an encouraging sign for the goaltender and his fantasy owners.

Murray (94 percent owned, 309th in Yahoo) is 9-1-1 in his past 11 games with a .925 save percentage and remains worth stashing on a fantasy bench or in an IR+ spot. Casey DeSmith (15 percent) has started the past two games for Pittsburgh, allowing a combined six goals on 43 shots faced. Jarry (14 percent) relieved DeSmith against the Boston Bruins on Thursday but allowed five goals on 33 shots faced in their 8-4 loss.

 

Luongo must-own goalie, Reimer worth streaming because of Panthers schedule

The Florida Panthers are making a strong push for a Stanley Cup Playoff spot, and their remaining schedule favors goaltenders Roberto Luongo and James Reimer.

Luongo (62 percent owned, 113th in Yahoo) is worth owning in all fantasy formats after his fourth-straight win; he stopped 29 of 31 shots faced against the New Jersey Devils on Thursday. The Panthers have the most games remaining in the League (21) and a favorable split at home (12) and against non-contending teams (10, most in NHL). They play their first of five remaining back-to-back sets against the Buffalo Sabres on Friday, making Reimer (21 percent) worth streaming in deep leagues.

Video: NJD@FLA: Luongo stands strong to stone Wood's chance

Among goaltenders with more than 20 appearances, Luongo is tied with Andrei Vasilevskiy and Pekka Rinne for fourth in save percentage (.927); Carter Hutton (.935), Marc-Andre Fleury (.930) and Corey Crawford (.929) are the top three.

From a DFS standpoint, Reimer ($7,800) is expensive given his recent struggles (15 goals allowed in past three games) but still worth rostering against the Sabres, who are allowing the second-most DraftKings points to opposing goaltenders. Reimer is 8-4-2 with a .907 SV% and two shutouts in 15 home games.

 

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