Each day during the 2015-16 season, NHL.com's fantasy staff will identify one player at each position worth owning in DraftKings daily fantasy hockey contests. Based on factors including but not limited to matchups, line combinations, power-play usage, statistical coverage and recent production, we'll provide you with lower-priced options that can help you build a winning lineup.
Players accumulate points in DraftKings for each goal (3 points), assist (2), shot on goal (0.5), blocked shot (0.5) and shootout goal (0.2). Bonuses are given for shorthanded points (1) and hat tricks (1.5). Goalies accumulate points for each win (3) and save (0.2), and lose a point for each goal allowed. Goalie bonuses are given for a shutout (2) where the goalie completes the entire game with no goals allowed in regulation (and overtime, if applicable). Shootout goals will not prevent a shutout, and goalies will receive points for any goals or assists they score in a game. Penalty minutes, hits, plus-minus and PP points DO NOT count in DraftKings. DraftKings lineups must include nine players (2 C, 3 W, 2 D, 1 G, 1 FLEX) and fit within the $50,000 salary cap.
Jack Eichel, C, Buffalo Sabres
DraftKings price: $5,100
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Eichel continues to pass the eye test and faces the Calgary Flames, who are allowing the second-most DraftKings points in the League to the center position this season. He is being reunited with high-volume shooter Evander Kane ($5,500) and could be in line for a breakout night against an opponent that has won seven straight home games but remains vulnerable. Eichel is averaging 3.3 SOG per game as a rookie, so stacking him and Kane should provide foundational production -- and icing on the cake if they combine on a goal or two.
Ondrej Palat, W, Tampa Bay Lightning
DraftKings price: $4,200
Ahead of his return to the lineup, Palat is available for a serious discount in DraftKings at home against the Ottawa Senators, who are allowing the most shots on goal per game League-wide this season (33.8). He hasn't played since Nov. 7 and was having an underachieving season prior to his injury (seven points, 29 SOG) but has chipped in blocked shots at a high rate for a forward (12 in 16 games). He's more than capable of a multipoint game alongside his usual linemates Tyler Johnson ($5,000) and Nikita Kucherov ($5,300).
Jacob Trouba, D, Winnipeg Jets
DraftKings price: $3,900
Trouba has been racking up blocked shots all season long (57 in 28 games) and has recently seen an uptick in SOG production with 11 in his past four games. He had his three-game point streak snapped Sunday against the Chicago Blackhawks, but still registered one block and four SOG. He's the Jets defenseman of the future with Dustin Byfuglien in a contract year and plays more than 20 minutes per night. He's tied for 29th on the price chain at his position and is a high-floor, low-risk option that could get heavily involved against the Columbus Blue Jackets, who are allowing 2.86 goals per game this season (T-7th most in NHL) and are now without goalie Sergei Bobrovsky.
Connor Hellebuyck, G, Winnipeg Jets
DraftKings price: $6,400
Speaking of the Jets, ride their goaltender for however long it lasts. Hellebuyck will eventually lose his first game, but I don't expect it to come Thursday at home against Columbus. Prior to winning their last road game at the Philadelphia Flyers, the Blue Jackets scored two goals or fewer in each of their previous six games away from home. They continue to juggle their lines and the Jets have won their past two home games. Hellebuyck has taken full advantage of his opportunity while Ondrej Pavelec is sidelined by usurping Michael Hutchinson and winning his first three starts with a total of three goals allowed (contest-best 7.5 DraftKings points per game).