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: J.T. Miller ($4,400) - DRAFTKINGS POINTS TOTAL: 3.0
On this two-game slate, you're better off spending up at positions other than center. Miller has had a quiet Stanley Cup Playoffs with no goals and one assist in eight games, but has been generating plenty of scoring chances lately. Eleven of his 15 shots on goal have come in his past three games (2.7 DraftKings points per game), and he finished second on the New York Rangers in regular-season points (56). Miller is available at a major discount for Game 3 against the Ottawa Senators after being priced in the $5,000 range for much of the season.
VALUE CENTER: Jean-Gabriel Pageau, OTT ($3,800) - DRAFTKINGS POINTS TOTAL: 5.5
Even before Pageau's four-goal outburst in Game 2 (16.0 DraftKings points), he was a point-per-game player this season against the Rangers. He now has nine points (six goals, three assists) in five games against New York. He was in a good spot centering wings Mike Hoffman and Alexandre Burrows in Game 2, and is worth a cheap flier in Game 3 in case the confidence stemming from his breakout game carries over. Pageau has also been valuable on the defensive end, averaging 1:45 of shorthanded ice time with 13 blocks through eight playoff games.
Video: NYR@OTT, Gm2: Pageau nets four, wins game in 2OT
TOP WING: Filip Forsberg, NSH ($6,700) - DRAFTKINGS POINTS TOTAL: 1.5
In the past three playoffs, Forsberg has 10 points (seven goals, three assists) and 42 SOG in 12 home games, including a hat trick against the Chicago Blackhawks in their 2015 series. He plays on the Predators' top line with Ryan Johansen and Viktor Arvidsson, and had one assist and two SOG in Game 3 on Sunday. He has seven points in as many games this postseason and is averaging more than three shots per game (22 SOG). He has seven points and 26 SOG in eight games against the St. Louis Blues this season.
VALUE WING: Alexander Steen, STL ($4,800) - DRAFTKINGS POINTS TOTAL: 3.5
After averaging 2.7 DraftKings points per game in the regular season, Steen is up to 3.3 in the playoffs. He has six points and 15 SOG in eight games playing mostly on the Blues second line with rotating linemates. He skated with center Paul Stastny and wing Vladimir Sobotka in Game 3 against the Predators, and had one goal, one block and two SOG (4.5 DraftKings points). He had 10 points in 20 games during the Blues' run to the Western Conference Final last postseason.
TOP DEFENSEMAN: Ryan Ellis, NSH ($5,200) - DRAFTKINGS POINTS TOTAL: 6.5
Nashville's top-four defensemen (Ellis, P.K. Subban, Roman Josi, Mattias Ekholm) have fueled its offense this postseason, combining for seven goals and 14 assists in seven playoff games. Ellis is pacing the group with eight playoff points, tied with Erik Karlsson of the Senators for the lead among defensemen. You're looking at comparable all-around production with more than $2,000 of savings when drafting Ellis compared to Karlsson right now. Ellis has at least 3.0 DraftKings points in each of his seven playoff games and at least 5.0 in six games.
Video: STL@NSH, Gm3: Ellis opens scoring from the point
VALUE DEFENSEMAN: Brady Skjei, NYR ($3,600) - DRAFTKINGS POINTS TOTAL: 1.0
After a strong rookie season among the NHL defenseman leaders in even-strength points (32, T-8th), Skjei has four goals (most among 'D'), seven blocks and 13 SOG in eight playoff games. He had five goals in 80 regular-season games. He scored twice in Game 2 against the Senators, including a toe-drag goal in the third period after making a timely block on the defensive end. He's had at least 4.5 DraftKings points in three playoff games and is somehow only $1,100 above the DraftKings minimum price.
GOALIE SPOTLIGHT: Henrik Lundqvist, NYR ($8,100) - DRAFTKINGS POINTS TOTAL: 7.2
Lundqvist is 0-3-0 with a .900 save percentage against the Senators this regular season and playoffs combined, but should finally break through at home in Game 3. He won back-to-back games at Madison Square Garden against the Montreal Canadiens in Games 4 and 6 of the Eastern Conference First Round, stopping 50 of a combined 52 shots faced. He's 33-27 in 60 career home playoff games with a 2.20 goals-against average, .919 SV% and five shutouts.
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