All season long, NHL.com's fantasy staff will provide daily picks for DraftKings NHL contests. This article includes expensive and value plays and can be used as a basis for your roster decision-making.
MORE FANTASY COVERAGE: DFS strategy guide | Pete Jensen's Mailbag
NOTE: These picks do not include the 2 p.m. ET game between the Ottawa Senators and Colorado Avalanche.
Spend up for: Evgeni Malkin, PIT ($7,400): The Pittsburgh Penguins center quietly has 18 points (seven goals, 11 assists) and 50 shots on goal in 17 games this season. When healthy, he continues to prove he's one of the highest-scoring centers in the League. He's coming off a three-point, five-SOG game against the Arizona Coyotes on Tuesday and has 51 points (16 goals, 35 assists) in 37 career regular-season games against the Washington Capitals, whom the Penguins visit Friday.
Value pick: Mathew Barzal, NYI ($4,600): The New York Islanders rookie has a six-game point streak totaling 11 points (two goals, nine assists). Barzal has also taken advantage of first-unit power-play usage alongside John Tavares and Anders Lee with four power-play points in his past four games. He played 18:59 in his previous game, an NHL career high, and should see a similar total against the Dallas Stars on Friday.
Video: Mathew Barzal's Five-Assist Night
Spend up for: Blake Wheeler, WPG ($7,700): The second highest-scoring wing in the contest behind Alex Ovechkin, Wheeler is averaging more than 5.0 DraftKings points per game this season. The Winnipeg Jets right wing had four assists in a 4-1 win against the Dallas Stars on Monday and has 13 points (four goals, nine assists) over his past five games. He has a favorable road matchup against the Vegas Golden Knights on Friday.
Value pick: Jordan Eberle, NYI ($5,100): After not scoring a goal in his first 10 games of the season, Eberle has five goals on 13 SOG over his past five games. He has 12 points (five goals, seven assists) in 15 games and has a solid shot volume (37 SOG). The longtime Edmonton Oilers forward has played the Stars, his Friday opponent, 19 times and has 11 points (three goals, eight assists). The Stars are allowing three goals per game, and fantasy owners can easily stack Eberle with his linemate Barzal hoping each continues his recent hot stretch.
Spend up for: Seth Jones, CBJ ($5,000): Jones was scoreless against his former team, the Nashville Predators, on Tuesday, but had four points in his three prior games. The Columbus Blues Jackets have lost three straight and will try to end that streak against the Carolina Hurricanes, who have lost four of five games. Jones is an all-around threat with 12 points (three goals, nine assists) in 16 games and is averaging 2.7 SOG per game and 1.4 blocked shots per game.
Video: CBJ@TBL: Jones scores after fortuitous deflection
Value pick: Nikita Zaitsev, TOR ($3,700): The Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman may not be scoring as much as last season (six points in 17 games; 36 points in 82 games in 2016-17) because of a diminished power-play role, but his 48 blocked shots rank second in the League. He has taken 12 SOG (fewer than one per game), and has been focused on his defense rather than his offense. Zaitsev plays 23:03 per game and could bounce back against the depleted Boston Bruins on Friday.
Connor Hellebuyck, WPG ($7,900): The Jets are off to an 8-3-3 start and are doing it with offense and strong goaltending by Hellebuyck. He's averaging 6.2 DraftKings points per contest and has yet to lose in regulation this season (8-0-2). Hellebuyck's worst game saw him allow five goals on 50 shots faced in a 5-4 overtime loss to the Canadiens on Nov. 4, but he still had a .900 save percentage and racked up DraftKings points because of his high saves total. He's allowed two goals or fewer in nine of his 11 games.
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