NHL.com's fantasy staff will provide daily picks for DraftKings NHL contests during the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs (until end of Conference Finals). This article includes expensive and value plays and should be used as a basis for your roster decision-making.
TOP CENTER: Eric Staal, MIN ($6,800)
Staal has not scored a point in six straight Stanley Cup Playoff games, but should end that slump for the Minnesota Wild on a line with red-hot Zach Parise against the St. Louis Blues in Game 2. Staal has 33 points in 42 home games (regular season and playoffs combined), three assists in six games against the Blues and 43 points in 49 career postseason games. With Paul Stastny (lower body) and Robby Fabbri (knee) injured, it should only be a matter of time before the Wild's center depth takes advantage in this series.
Video: MIN@ARI: Staal nets one-timer from circle for PPG
VALUE CENTER: Alexander Wennberg, CBJ ($4,700)
Wennberg was an assist machine in the regular season, leading the Columbus Blue Jackets with 46 and finishing tied for 15th in the League. He had 23 power-play points and has a chance to help Columbus steal Game 2 against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Wennberg was held without a point on two shots on goal in Game 1, but still has three points, three blocks and eight SOG in five games against the Penguins in the regular season and playoffs combined. He forms an against-the-grain stack with either Nick Foligno (W, $5,500) or Brandon Saad (W $5,400).
TOP WING: Jake Guentzel, PIT ($5,800)
Guentzel finished the regular season on a five-game point streak, but was held off the board in Game 1 against the Blue Jackets, mustering only two blocks and two SOG. That said, his linemate Sidney Crosby doesn't normally stay quiet for long, so expect the Penguins captain to feed off Guentzel and Conor Sheary and combine on at least one goal in Game 2. Guentzel has three points, five blocks and five SOG in four games against the Blue Jackets in the regular season and playoffs combined (3.0 DraftKings points per game).
Video: PIT@NJD: Guentzel finishes great pass from Bonino
VALUE WING: Rick Nash, NYR ($4,900)
Nash scored 23 goals on 195 SOG in the regular season and brings sneaky goal-scoring potential to Game 2 against the Montreal Canadiens. He had five points in six games against the Canadiens in their 2014 playoff series, and has scored two goals on 13 SOG against them in four games this regular season and postseason combined. Nash has five goals in his past nine games and had 2.0 DraftKings points in Game 1 despite not scoring a point.
TOP DEFENSEMAN: Seth Jones, CBJ ($5,200)
Jones had a career-high 42 points in 75 regular-season games, with 35 coming at even strength (T-6th among defensemen). He has four points in seven career postseason games, and is averaging 3.1 DraftKings points per game through five games against the Penguins in the regular season and playoffs combined. The Penguins allowed the second-most goals per game (2.79) in the regular season among postseason qualifiers.
Video: CBJ@PHI: Jones tallies PPG on fortunate bounce
VALUE DEFENSEMAN: Matt Dumba, MIN ($4,100)
Dumba has been limited to six points, three on the power play, and 22 SOG in 17 career postseason games. That said, he's one of the most underrated goal-scorers at his position with a combined 29 goals over the past three regular seasons (T-21st among defensemen). He returned value in Game 1 against the Blues with three blocks and two SOG, and scored 21 of his 34 points at home in the regular season.
GOALIE SPOTLIGHT: Devan Dubnyk, MIN ($8,200)
This is a virtual must-win situation for Dubnyk, who stopped 24 of 26 shots faced (2.8 DraftKings points) in the Wild's Game 1 overtime loss to the Blues. Dubnyk has excellent home splits, going 23-11-1 with a .920 save percentage and three shutouts in the regular season and playoffs combined. He is 2-3-1 against the Blues this season but has outstanding peripherals (1.90 goals-against average, .926 SV%). Expect the Wild offense to score at least three goals if they put forth anything resembling their Game 1 shot volume (52 SOG).
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