Each day this season, NHL.com's fantasy staff will provide daily picks for DraftKings NHL contests. This article includes expensive and value plays and should be used as a basis for your roster decision-making.
TOP CENTER: John Tavares, NYI ($7,400)
Tavares is usually at the top of his game against the New York Rangers; he has 36 points and 114 shots on goal in 38 games against them, including three points and 10 SOG in three games this season. Through the New York Islanders' ups and downs in recent weeks, he has nine points and 42 SOG in his past 10 games (4.6 DraftKings points per game; season average: 4.1). The Rangers will be on the second of a back-to-back set, and Antti Raanta, if he starts Wednesday, has a poor home save percentage (.903).
Video: CBJ@NYI: Tavares wrists one in through traffic
VALUE CENTER: Brandon Dubinsky, CBJ ($5,000)
With the status of Alexander Wennberg (neck) uncertain, Dubinsky should get a heavy workload for the Columbus Blue Jackets against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Dubinsky has at least a point in six of his past eight games, and had an assist against the Maple Leafs on Feb. 15. He has 18 points and 41 SOG in 22 games since the beginning of February, and covers blocks very well for a forward (52, T-26th).
TOP WING: Chris Kreider, NYR ($5,600)
The Rangers have had their share of home struggles lately, but fantasy owners can lean on Kreider, New York's leading scorer at Madison Square Garden, for a moderate price. He has three points, one block and 13 SOG in three games against the Islanders and 30 points in 34 home games. Kreider's five-game point streak ended at the Minnesota Wild on Saturday, but he's averaging 2.5 SOG per game with decent power-play production (13 power-play points).
Video: NYR@CAR: Kreider nets Stepan's smooth dish for PPG
VALUE WING: Joshua Ho-Sang, NYI ($3,700)
On a three-game night, you have to anticipate low-ownership players who could break out for multipoint games. Ho-Sang fits the bill playing on the second line with Andrew Ladd ($4,000), who has three goals in as many games against the Rangers this season. Many will be scared away by the fact that Ho-Sang has been held without a shot in two straight games, but he still has a high ceiling considering he had back-to-back multipoint games prior to this brief slump.
TOP DEFENSEMAN: Zach Werenski, CBJ ($5,700)
Werenski is the first rookie defenseman with at least 45 points (46), 20 PPP (21) and 175 SOG (177) since Dion Phaneuf in 2005-06. He has 15 points and 43 SOG in his past 16 games, and has big-game potential with five multipoint games in the span. He had two assists, one blocks and four SOG (6.5 DraftKings points) against Toronto earlier in the season. He is the most expensive defenseman on this three-game slate because he's the most likely to return value at home.
Video: FLA@CBJ: Werenski nets beautiful sharp-angle goal
VALUE DEFENSEMAN: Morgan Rielly, TOR ($4,300)
Rielly has six goals on 150 SOG this season (4.0 percent), but three have come on 17 SOG in his past five games. He also has an assist and 10 blocks in those five games for an average of 4.9 DraftKings points per game (season average: 2.8). Rielly's major minutes (22:17) are finally translating to fantasy relevance, so don't hesitate to employ him since his poor plus/minus can't hurt you in DraftKings.
GOALIE SPOTLIGHT: Jonathan Bernier, ANA ($7,900)
Bernier has been outstanding in the absence of John Gibson (lower body), who has been limited to one game in the past month. Bernier is 7-2-1 with a .943 SV% and one shutout in the span, and has been stellar this season at home (8-1-2, .935 SV%), where he faces the Edmonton Oilers. He's much cheaper than the other potential home starters on this slate (Raanta: $8,400; Sergei Bobrovsky: $8,300), so ride the hot hand in what could be a low-scoring game against Cam Talbot (.930 SV% in past 10).
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