Yahoo DFS Hockey: Saturday Picks
Yahoo DFS Hockey: Saturday Picks

This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Hockey series.

Saturday's 12-game NHL slate beginning at 1:00 PM Eastern time offers no shortage of action. While there are plenty of players to pick from, certain individuals stand out as the best and worst values based on price, lineup placement and opponent. Read on to see which players to target and which ones to avoid.

GOALIE

Henrik Lundqvist, NYR at BUF ($29): An empty-netter before New York scored its second goal kept the contest from going to overtime, but Lundqvist was still excellent in the season opener with 30 saves on 32 Nashville shots. The 2012 Vezina Trophy winner has more left in the tank than he's given credit for, making Lundqvist a nice value at $29 against a Sabres team that was shut out on home ice by Bruins backup Jaroslav Halak in its first game.

GOALIE TO AVOID

Roberto Luongo, FLA at TB ($34): With so many alternatives available, there's no need to get cute and roll out Luongo in this brutal matchup. Tampa Bay led the league with 3.54 goals per game last season and projects to be just as devastating on the offensive end in 2018-19.

CENTER

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, EDM at NJ ($19): While paying $34 for Connor McDavid hamstrings owners' ability to spend at other positions, it's possible to benefit from the young phenom's success by proxy. Nugent-Hopkins is listed as a center, but he's been operating on the wing alongside McDavid since last season. Skating with the best player in the world has its benefits, as Nugent-Hopkins illustrated with eight goals and 17 points in his last 16 games last season. He should pick up right where he left off after putting together a fantastic preseason by McDavid's side.

CENTER TO AVOID

Jonathan Drouin, MON at PIT ($18): Drouin failed to mark the scoresheet in Montreal's opener, and he carries a major rating risk in this contest. He's never been a paragon of defensive ability, coming off a minus-28 finish in his first season with the Canadiens. Drouin's inability to defend is likely to be exposed by a high-flying Penguins offense that racked up seven goals in its season debut.

WINGS

Ty Rattie, EDM at NJ ($16): The logic behind Rattie is similar to that with Nugent-Hopkins, as he rounds out Edmonton's top line, centered by the league's back-to-back points leader. At just $16, Rattie's a can't-miss value after a tremendous preseason in which he was contributing over two points per game.

Filip Forsberg, NSH at NYI ($25): Forsberg was terrific in the opener with a goal on four shots, and he's more than capable of marking the scoresheet once again after lighting the lamp at least 26 times in each of the past four seasons. The Islanders may seem formidable defensively after allowing just one goal to Carolina in the opener, but they surrendered a league-high 3.57 goals per game last season and gave up 46 shots in their win over the Hurricanes.

WINGS TO AVOID

Kristian Vesalainen, WPG at DAL ($17): Vesalainen recorded an assist in his NHL debut, but his chances of repeating that effort here are slim. He was entrusted with a mere 8:12 of ice time in that contest and didn't share the ice with Winnipeg's top weapons, so living up to a $17 valuation against a Dallas club that shut out Arizona in its first game will be difficult.

Brock Boeser, VAN at CGY ($24): Boeser was strangely quiet in the Canucks' win over Calgary on Wednesday, skating just 14:02while finishing with a minus-2 rating and no other meaningful statistics. He has the talent to live up to his lofty valuation in this rematch, but doing so will be tough if he plays a similarly limited role.

DEFENSEMEN

Max Lajoie, OTT at TOR ($17): Lajoie was phenomenal in his NHL debut, stuffing the stat sheet with a goal, an assist, a plus-1 rating, a power-play point, three shots and four blocks. Toronto represents a tough matchup, but Lajoie's all-around ability makes him a tempting option nonetheless at $17. The offensively gifted blueliner won't stay this affordable for long if he continues to play like he did in his first game, making him a worthy gamble regardless of opponent.

Rasmus Dahlin, BUF vs. NYR ($10): Even with Lundqvist primed for a strong effort here, it's tough to ignore his countryman Dahlin at the $10 minimum. Considered a generational talent on the blue line, the first overall selection in the 2018 draft is talented enough to be a difference-maker most nights, even on the lowly Sabres.

DEFENSEMEN TO AVOID

Nick Leddy, NYI vs. NSH ($18): Leddy had a dreadful minus-42 rating last season and finished with just a goal and five assists in his last 21 games, so it wasn't surprising to see him fail to mark the scoresheet in his first appearance of 2018-19. With limited scoring upside and plenty of rating downside against the team that had the NHL's best record last season, Leddy's almost all risk and little reward at $18.

Kevin Connauton, ARI vs. ANH ($17): Connauton's stats in his season debut were a good indicator of what's likely to come -- no points and a minus-2 rating. A second-pairing blueliner on a poor Coyotes team, Connauton had just 21 points last season and is likely to suffer in the rating category due to the lack of talent around him. There's almost no upside to using him against a defensively sound Ducks team led by netminder John Gibson ($36).

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Sasha Yodashkin plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: Youngsash, DraftKings: Yashdogg,Yahoo: Sasha, Fanball: Yashdogg.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sasha Yodashkin
Sasha Yodashkin writes about fantasy sports for RotoWire
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