This article is part of our DraftKings NHL series.
There are seven games in the NHL on Friday with the Islanders the largest favorite on the slate. Carolina, Boston and Colorado are also receiving notable chalk, whereas the Nashville-Chicago, St. Louis-Dallas and Minnesota-Edmonton matchups all project to be close contests. The Blues are the only team playing the second leg of a back-to-back set.
With Detroit scoring the fewest goals per game in the league this season and owning an active 1-14 record with just 1.72 goals per 60 minutes over its past 15 road outings, spending up for Semyon Varlamov ($8,400) or Thomas Greiss ($8,400) is a strong option. The Islanders have the fifth best team save percentage in the league and are in need of a bounce-back showing on home ice after losing four straight on a four-game road trip.
There have been peaks and valleys from Petr Mrazek ($8,000) this season, as his underwhelming .905 save percentage indicates, but he's also won consecutive starts and stopped 63 of 66 shots. Carolina also owns the best Corsi For percentage in the league, which should prove to be a mismatch with the Rangers ranking fourth last. Just note, New York does rank sixth in the league in goals per 60 minutes.
Boston is a sizeable favorite Friday, and Tuukka Rask ($7,900) has surrendered two goals or fewer in each of his past 12 appearances for a 9-1-1 record, .951 save percentage and 1.45 GAA. Calgary has scored 31 times through its past six games, though, so the matchup is far from a layup.
A potential contrarian option, Mikko Koskinen ($8,000) turned in a tidy, 33-save win last time out and could carry a low ownership percentage because of all the options in his price range. Minnesota is a middle-of-the-pack opponent, too. The Wild are 11-15-2 with 2.88 goals per hour on the road this season.
Kailer Yamamoto's ($6,500) price is climbing right along with his offensive production. The 21-year-old winger has marked the scoresheet in nine of his past 12 contests for seven tallies and six helpers, and he's clicked with center Leon Draisaitl ($8,500) for a rock-solid 4.78 goals per hour this season. Minnesota has surrendered the third most goals per hour on the road this season, too.
This is a perfect matchup for Mathew Barzal ($6,000) to have a big showing. The third-year center has recorded just five assists through his past eight games despite playing top offensive minutes, so with Detroit allowing the most goals per game in the league, there's plenty of profit margin on his manageable salary. It's also worth noting that 31 of Barzal's 49 points have come on home ice.
With Chicago allowing the third most goals per hour since Dec. 1, Matt Duchene's ($4,900) salary stands out as a discount. It's been a disappointing first season in Nashville for the veteran, but he's showing signs of late with six points – two goals – through his past 10 outings. Additionally, there's positive regression ahead of his 9.3 shooting percentage after posting a 14.7 mark over the previous four years.
Back to the Islanders, after recording 13 points – seven goals – during a 10-game stretch, Anthony Beauvillier ($4,500) has just a single tally through his past five outings. A date with the Red Wings is exactly what the streaky scorer needs, and his price is easy to slide under the cap.
Martin Necas ($3,100) and Nino Niederreiter ($3,300) are skating together at five-on-five and with the second power-play unit, and both provide an upside source of cap relief. The Rangers have surrendered the most expected goals per hour in the league this season, and the duo has clicked for 5.37 goals per 60 minutes this season. Necas and Nederreiter check out as a potential mini stack or standalone values.
FORWARD LINE STACKS
With 3.15 goals against per game and a 21st-ranked 78.0 penalty-kill percentage, there's nothing scary about a date with the Ducks, and Andrei Burakovsky's ($5,600) salary helps bring down the cap hit of Colorado's top line. Nathan MacKinnon ($8,600), Gabriel Landeskog ($6,600) and Burakovsky combined for two goals and two assists last time out, and the trio projects to also skate together on the No. 1 power-play unit.
Patrice Bergeron ($7,600), David Pastrnak ($8,500) and Brad Marchand ($7,300) are another high-priced stack to consider. They continue to dominate offensively with 10 tallies and 13 helpers through the past six games, and it's also a soft matchup. The Flames have allowed 47 goals through their past 12 games.
As noted, the Rangers aren't a daunting defense, so Carolina's loaded top line should be positioned favorably. Sebastian Aho ($7,500), Andrei Svechnikov ($6,400) and Teuvo Teravainen ($5,500) have clicked for an elite 6.24 goals and 21.52 high-danger scoring chances per 60 minutes over the past two years, after all.
Nashville has reunited Ryan Johansen ($4,500), Filip Forsberg ($6,200) and Viktor Arvidsson ($4,900) of late, and the trio has been solid. They've scored 6.19 goals per 60 minutes for the campaign, and the trio has oodles of chemistry with over 2,000 minutes of shared ice time over the past four seasons. As noted, the Blackhawks aren't an intimidating defensive opponent, either.
A low-priced trio to keep in mind, Kirby Dach ($3,600), Alex DeBrincat ($4,600) and Dylan Strome ($3,600) should land in soft even-strength matchups and have recorded a respectable 3.35 goals with a 52.2 Corsi For percentage at five-on-five this season. They also all skate together on the No. 2 power-play unit, and Nashville's penalty kill ranks last in the league (74.1 percent).
In the noted soft matchup against Calgary, consider Torey Krug ($5,900) a solid addition to a Boston stack or as a standalone defensemen. He's registered an impressive 24 shots through his past five contests, and his 2.21 points per hour rank sixth in the league among all regular blueliners this year.
With three helpers over the past two games, Cale Makar ($5,700) is back on track, and his salary doesn't break the bank. The Ducks present a favorable matchup for the power-play quarterback, and Makar ranks second in points per hour among all regular defensemen this season.
Settled in as Carolina's go-to blueliner in all situations, Jaccob Slavin ($4,900) has recorded eight points, 17 shots and 13 blocks while logging 24:31 (2:25 with the man advantage) through the past 10 games. The price is reasonable, and the matchup is favorable, so expect the 27-year-old American to be a popular target.
Anthony DeAngelo ($4,600) is a screaming value considering he ranks third in points per hour (2.49) among regular defensemen this year. He proved his health with a multi-assist showing last time out after missing two games with an upper-body injury. Just note, the salary discount is likely reflective of the difficult road matchup against Carolina.