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: Auston Matthews, TOR ($7,600)
The Toronto Maple Leafs are making life extremely difficult for the Presidents' Trophy-winning Washington Capitals in the Eastern Conference First Round, scoring 15 goals in five games and pushing four of the five games into overtime. Matthews, 19, has four points (three goals, one assist) and 14 shots on goal in the first five Stanley Cup Playoff games of his career and is averaging 6.0 DraftKings points in the two games at Air Canada Centre, the site of Game 6.
Video: TOR@WSH, Gm5: Matthews scores with quick hands
VALUE CENTER: Sean Kuraly, BOS ($3,000)
Kuraly replaced Ryan Spooner (healthy scratch) in the lineup for Game 5 against the Ottawa Senators and scored the first two goals of his NHL career, including the winner in the second overtime. He generated plenty of offense with six SOG in the game and almost certainly earned another chance to help the Boston Bruins extend their season. He's a glaring value pick in fantasy and could easily return value priced $500 above the DraftKings minimum.
TOP WING: T.J. Oshie, WSH ($7,000)
Oshie scored an NHL career-high 33 goals in 68 regular-season games and finished tied for fourth in the League in goals per game (0.49). He has benefited from playing on the top line and first power-play unit with Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom, and has carried it over to the postseason with seven points and three power-play points in five games against the Maple Leafs. Oshie was outstanding in the 2016 postseason as well, totaling 10 points in 12 games.
Video: TOR@WSH, Gm5: Oshie puts home rebound for PPG
VALUE WING: Mark Stone, OTT ($4,700)
Stone has been held to two points in five playoff games but has 14 SOG and is one of the highest-scoring players priced below $5,000 on this two-game slate. He scored a goal in Game 5 and had 54 points in 71 regular-season games. He's a fixture in Ottawa's top-six forward group and gets time on the second power-play unit alongside center Kyle Turris. Stone has 28 points in 37 road games in the regular season and playoffs combined.
TOP DEFENSEMAN: Morgan Rielly, TOR ($4,400)
Rielly is averaging 26:59 per game in the playoffs (ninth in NHL). He also has seen a postseason scoring uptick with four points in five games. Three of his points have come on the power play after he had five PPP in 76 regular-season games. The type of power-play minutes rookie Nikita Zaitsev was getting for most of the regular season are now going to Rielly, who's averaging 2:30 per game with the man-advantage in the playoffs (regular-season average: 0:58).
Video: TOR@WSH, Gm2: Rielly scores PPG through traffic
VALUE DEFENSEMAN: Charlie McAvoy, BOS ($3,800)
McAvoy continues to shoulder a heavy workload for the Bruins after never playing an NHL game prior to the playoffs. He played 31:14 in Game 5 and had an assist, raising his average ice time in the playoffs to 26:35. He also had a PPP in Game 3 and is leading the Bruins in power-play ice time per game (3:12). He's a potential game-changer for the Bruins to carry into the future, no matter how this series ends.
GOALIE SPOTLIGHT: Tuukka Rask, BOS ($8,100)
Rask made 41 saves on 43 shots in Game 5 against the Senators, improving his save percentage in the series to .924. That's nearly in line with his career playoff SV% (.929), even with the Bruins so depleted on defense without injured Torey Krug (lower body), Brandon Carlo (upper body) and Adam McQuaid (upper body). The Bruins have lost their two home games in this series, so you can expect a response from Rask, who was 20-10-1 with a .916 SV% and five shutouts at TD Garden in the regular season.
Video: BOS@OTT, Gm5: Rask extends to rob Stalberg in OT
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