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.
Aleksander Barkov, C, Florida Panthers
Not available in all U.S. states. See Official Rules for full eligibility rules and further details.
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DraftKings price: $5,400
Florida's power play has been dynamite at home this season (29.8), which bodes well for its chances against the New York Islanders on Friday. Barkov, 20, has 10 points and 31 shots on goal in 11 games this season, including four power-play points. His SOG-per-game average (2.8) blows away his rate in 71 games last season (1.7), and he's tied for 11th in terms of DraftKings price among centers. He plays with Jaromir Jagr ($5,400) and Jonathan Huberdeau ($4,800) at even strength and with the man-advantage, making for nice stacking options against the Islanders, who have allowed five goals in their past 14 penalty-kill opportunities.
Evander Kane, W, Buffalo Sabres
DraftKings price: $5,100
Kane, a game-time decision Friday because of a lower-body injury, is worth considering if he plays because of his place alongside Ryan O'Reilly and Brian Gionta on Buffalo's top line. He scored his second goal of the season and added five SOG Wednesday against the Nashville Predators, and has four-plus SOG in six of his 12 games this season (3.6 SOG per game this season). He's due for a shooting percentage correction (two goals on 43 SOG), and bound for better production on the power play (2:50 per game on PP). He's priced 17th among wings in Friday contests that begin at 7 p.m. ET and is facing the Carolina Hurricanes, who have allowed 26 goals in 10 road games this season.
David Savard, D, Columbus Blue Jackets
DraftKings price: $3,600
Savard, for this price, is a high-floor defenseman worth taking a chance on. He's averaging 2.7 DraftKings points per contest despite a 23-game goal-scoring drought to start the season because of his strong blocked shot (40) and SOG (44) volumes. He scored 11 goals last season, so the ability is there. He had his 10th assist of the season Wednesday against the New Jersey Devils and is worth rostering because plus-minus doesn't count in DraftKings and his foundational stats bring little risk. Any point production from Savard will land you unique value in larger DraftKings contests.
Mike Smith, G, Arizona Coyotes
DraftKings price: $6,300
Smith had a rough patch earlier in the season, but has responded nicely with two goals allowed or fewer in consecutive games and six of his past eight. His peripherals on the season are sub-par, but Smith (4.2 DraftKings points per contest) has found his groove of late and is tied for the cheapest goalie price among projected Friday starters with Chad Johnson of the Sabres (3.1). Smith's opponent, the Calgary Flames, is allowing 3.59 goals per game, by far the worst in the NHL, with 45 goals allowed in 12 road games (3.75). He has a great chance at the win bonus.