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DraftKings daily fantasy value picks for Dec. 28

by Pete Jensen / NHL.com

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.


Jonathan Marchessault, C, Tampa Bay Lightning

DraftKings price: $2,900

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Sometimes it's just worth riding the hot hand in DraftKings if the price is right, and this is one of those cases with Marchessault. He's quietly in the midst of a six-game point streak (three goals, four assists), and has 24 shots on goal in his past 10 games. He's only a short-term option, but is priced near the bottom of the barrel and has made quite an impression with an uptick in power-play ice time for the Lightning minus Tyler Johnson and Ondrej Palat. He has three power-play points in his past two games and is as cheap as they come for a player with such strong recent production. He faces the injury depleted Montreal Canadiens, who have lost six straight road games with three or more goals allowed in five of those six.

Justin Williams, W, Washington Capitals

DraftKings price: $4,800

We've harped on Williams plenty of times this season, but for as long as he costs fewer than $5,000 and has such strong road splits, he is a prime DFS option at the Buffalo Sabres. He's playing with Evgeny Kuznetsov ($5,700) at even strength, has 13 points in 16 road games and is averaging 2.5 SOG per game this season (85 in 34 games). He's also more than capable of chipping in a block or two (17 blocks this season) presenting a high ceiling for a guy in a favorable spot who's priced outside the top 20 wings in DraftKings.

Marc-Edouard Vlasic, D, San Jose Sharks

DraftKings price: $4,100

Vlasic is not usually regarded as a fantasy asset, but his DraftKings category coverage has been severely underrated this season. He has 50-plus blocks (53) and 50-plus SOG (56), and is on an 82-game pace of 10 goals and 25 assists, which would sniff his career-high 36 points from 2008-09. Vlasic, 23rd among defensemen in price, sees 23:19 of ice time per game with 2:02 coming on the power play. He's a high-floor DFS option on defense who can give you a big boost if he records a point at home against the Colorado Avalanche, who are among the League's bottom 10 in goals allowed per game (2.75) and shots allowed per game (30.5) in addition to being last in shot attempts percentage close (44.81).

Darcy Kuemper, G, Minnesota Wild

DraftKings price: $7,300

The Wild are one of the best home teams in the NHL (13-5-1) and the Detroit Red Wings travel north from Nashville to Minnesota after beating the Predators on Saturday. Kuemper has won three straight starts with three goals allowed in that span and has a .936 save percentage this season in four appearances at Xcel Energy Center (3-0-1). He is still without a regulation loss on the season (4-0-4), and continues to make a case for playing time after getting an opportunity while Devan Dubnyk was sidelined with injury. Kuemper, ninth on the goalie price scale, has a .926 power-play SV% and is capable of neutralizing the Red Wings' strong power play (25 percent in road games). (Editor's Note: Kuemper was a late scratch for the Wild because of an upper-body injury).

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