This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Hockey series.
Friday's NHL slate is a modest one, with just four games on tap after 7:00 PM Eastern time. Despite the scarcity of selection, certain players still stand out as options to target or avoid at their respective valuations. Read on to see who falls into which category.
Braden Holtby, WAS vs. NJ ($31): The Devils were pretty bad to begin with, and they're a shell of their former selves with injuries ravaging the roster. Holtby should have no trouble beating a team that's 8-21-3 on the road and could be playing without its entire first line and two most offensively gifted blueliners.
GOALIE TO AVOID
MacKenzie Blackwood, NJ at WAS ($31): It should go without saying, but just in case you were thinking about going the contrarian route: if you use a Devils goalie here, you're gonna have a bad time. Blackwood has exceeded expectations over a 15-game sample size so far, but the young netminder will likely be left out to dry by the injury-riddled lineup in front of him against the reigning Stanley Cup champs.
Max Domi, MON at ANH ($20): Domi has been the primary catalyst for Montreal's offense over the past 10 games, with five goals, six assists and 34 shots. Don't expect a Ducks team with a league-worst minus-58 goal differential to slow him down, even with Montreal on the second leg of a back-to-back.
CENTER TO AVOID
Phillip Danault, MON at ANH ($18): Danault hasn't scored a goal since Feb. 7, and his meager 15 shots in 12 subsequent games don't exactly suggest that he's knocking on the door. Do yourself a favor and pay up the extra $2 for Domi here.
Troy Terry, ANH vs. MON ($13): After posting just one goal and one assist in his first 18 NHL appearances, Terry has hit his stride at the top level with two goals and three assists over his past five games, including a goal and three helpers in his last two. The 21-year-old forward is a nice against-the-grain option against a Canadiens team that's playing its second game in as many nights, especially if this recent uptick turns out to be more than just a flash in the pan.
Ryan Donato, MIN at FLA ($17): Donato has been terrific since coming over from Boston at the trade deadline, recording nine points in eight games with the Wild, including three on the power play. Any disadvantage that comes with playing the second leg of a back-to-back is washed out with the Panthers also finishing out a back-to-back set, and Donato should get plenty of chances to add to his success with Minnesota considering Florida ranks among the league's five most generous teams when it comes to goals allowed per game.
WINGS TO AVOID
Zach Parise, MIN at FLA ($22): Parise has just one goal in his last 10 games, and that one was the result of a blatant missed penalty call on teammate Eric Staal. With his recent lack of production, there's little reason to look Parise's way while cheaper Wild wingers like Donato and Jason Zucker are surging.
Brett Connolly, WAS vs. NJ ($16): Connolly's hot and the matchup's right, but it's still hard to justify dropping $16 on him. He averages a mere 13:21 of ice time per game and is already in uncharted territory with 36 points, having failed to record more than 27 in any of his previous seven NHL campaigns. Regression seems inevitable.
Keith Yandle, FLA vs. MIN ($17): Few players rely more on the power play than Yandle, who has scored 34 of his 54 points with the extra man. He couldn't ask for a juicier matchup given that context, as Minnesota's penalty kill has been the most generous in the league since the beginning of February. This matchup being in Florida is the icing on the cake, as Yandle has scored 31 of his 54 points at home and has an even rating which is miles better than his minus-18 road mark.
Dougie Hamilton, CAR vs. WPG ($18): After a disappointing start to his Hurricanes tenure, Hamilton flipped the page when the calendar flipped to 2019. Since then, he has nine goals and nine assists in 28 games. Even when he's not getting on the scoresheet, Hamilton consistently generates value by flinging rubber at the cage – he's one of three defensemen with over 200 shots on goal this season, along with Brent Burns and Roman Josi. That's good company.
DEFENSEMEN TO AVOID
Aaron Ekblad, FLA vs. MIN ($18): There's little reason to turn to Ekblad when Yandle can be had cheaper. Ekblad has just 30 points this season, with a mere 10 of those coming in 34 appearances on home ice.
Tyler Myers, WPG at CAR ($16): Myers has demonstrated a low floor, scoring 2.5 fantasy points or fewer five times in his last seven games. There's no need to take on so much risk with him against a hot Hurricanes team when stat-stuffing teammate Jacob Trouba can be had for just $1 more.