NHL.com's fantasy staff will provide daily picks for DraftKings NHL games 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: Sidney Crosby, PIT ($8,300) - DRAFTKINGS POINTS TOTAL: 5.0
Crosby has burned the Washington Capitals in his NHL career with 60 points (20 goals, 40 assists) in 41 career regular-season games and 17 points in 14 Stanley Cup Playoff games. He scored two goals in a span of 52 seconds against the Capitals in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Second Round, extending his playoff point streak to five games. He and wing Jake Guentzel ($6,400) have been on fire for the Pittsburgh Penguins the past two months, but Patric Hornqvist ($5,400), who took Conor Sheary's spot on Crosby's right wing in Game 1, offers the more cost-effective stack. Hornqvist had two assists, two blocks and two shots on goal in Game 1.
Video: PIT@WSH, Gm1: Crosby strikes 12 seconds into 2nd
VALUE CENTER: Derick Brassard, OTT ($4,900) - DRAFTKINGS POINTS TOTAL: 2.5
Among players with at least 50 playoff games since 2013, Brassard is tied for fourth in points per game (0.79) behind Evgeni Malkin (0.95), Patrick Kane (0.93) and Crosby (0.90). Between Brassard's time with the New York Rangers in years past and the Ottawa Senators this postseason, he always seems to take his game up a notch. He scored eight points (two goals, six assists) in six games against the Boston Bruins in the first round, and returned value on shots alone (five SOG) in Game 1 against the Rangers.
Video: OTT@BOS, Gm3: Brassard slams home Ryan's nice dish
TOP WING: T.J. Oshie, WSH ($7,000) - DRAFTKINGS POINTS TOTAL: 2.5
Oshie is having another strong postseason, totaling eight points (three goals, five assists) in seven games after his assist in Game 1 against the Penguins. That gives him 11 points in five games against Pittsburgh this regular season and playoffs combined. Denied of a golden scoring chance on a kick save by Guentzel in the first period, Oshie should come out even hungrier in Game 2. Oshie has 32 points (18 goals, 14 assists) in 37 home games this season, and has scored 10 of his 16 power-play points at Verizon Center. The Capitals' top line of Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom and Oshie should do its part to make sure they don't fall into a 2-0 series hole.
VALUE WING: Mark Stone, OTT ($4,600) - DRAFTKINGS POINTS TOTAL: 4.5
Stone has been held to two points in seven games this postseason, but is averaging three SOG per game (21 total). His shooting percentage in the regular season was 16.4, so expect his playoff conversion rate of 4.8 to eventually rebound. Stone has four points in four games against the Rangers this season, and was one of four Ottawa skaters with at least 50 points in the regular season (54) along with Erik Karlsson (71), Mike Hoffman (61) and Kyle Turris (55) despite missing 11 games. Stone is the cheapest of that bunch and has multiple blocks in two of his past three games.
Video: BOS@OTT, Gm5: Stone converts on a breakaway in 1st
TOP DEFENSEMAN: Ryan McDonagh, NYR ($5,300) - DRAFTKINGS POINTS TOTAL: 7.5
Despite the Rangers' offensive inconsistency this postseason, McDonagh has remained valuable in daily fantasy. He has points in three of his past four games and at least two blocked shots in each of his seven playoff games. He scored a power-play goal with five blocks and two shots (6.5 DraftKings points) in Game 1 against the Senators, giving him four points, 10 blocks and four SOG in three games against Ottawa (average of 5.3 DraftKings points). He leads the Rangers in average ice time (26:41) by nearly five minutes per game. New York is 2-for-19 on the power play this postseason, but McDonagh's goal gave the first unit some much-needed momentum.
Video: NYR@OTT, Gm1: McDonagh nets PPG from the point
VALUE DEFENSEMAN: Ron Hainsey, PIT ($3,200) - DRAFTKINGS POINTS TOTAL: 1.5
Hainsey has seen a major fantasy value spike from 1.4 DraftKings points per game in the regular season to 3.3 in the postseason. With Kris Letang (neck surgery) sidelined, Hainsey is averaging 19:58 per game with a total of three points, nine SOG and 16 blocks in six playoff games. For this low of a price, how could you not take a flier on a strong shot-blocker with so much even-strength exposure to Crosby, Malkin and Phil Kessel?
GOALIE SPOTLIGHT: Craig Anderson, OTT ($7,600) - DRAFTKINGS POINTS TOTAL: 6.6
Entering Friday, Anderson is the only goalie with a save percentage better than .925 in the regular season (.926) and playoffs (.930). He's 15-7-2 with two shutouts at home this season, and 3-0-0 with a .977 SV% and one shutout against the Rangers. He has a strong chance of returning value regardless of whether he wins or loses because the Rangers have not scored more than three goals in any of their seven playoff games. He has a .933 SV% and four shutouts in 34 career Stanley Cup Playoff games, so his success this postseason is far from a fluke.
Video: NYR@OTT, Gm1: Anderson robs Grabner's redirect
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