Yahoo DFS Hockey: Thursday Breakdown

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·4 min read
Yahoo DFS Hockey: Thursday Breakdown
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  • Tampa Bay Lightning
    Tampa Bay Lightning
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  • Washington Capitals
    Washington Capitals
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  • Andrei Vasilevskiy
    Andrei Vasilevskiy
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  • Ilya Samsonov
    Ilya Samsonov
    Russian ice hockey player

GOALIE

Ilya Samsonov, WAS vs. CHI ($34): Samsonov has been up and down over the last couple of weeks, but he has ultimately posted a .931 save percentage and a 5-1-0 record. You have to spend up for Samsonov, but the matchup against Chicago makes it worth it. The Second City squad ranks 30th in the league with 2.10 goals per game and 22nd with a 16.2 percent success rate on the power play. 

GOALIE TO AVOID

Andrei Vasilevskiy, TB vs. STL ($39): Vasilevskiy is the best goalie in hockey right now, but he also commands the second-highest salary tonight despite his tough matchup. The Blues rank seventh in the league with 3.32 goals per game and second with a 29.5 percent power play. It's probably wise to fade him.

CENTER

Jack Hughes, NJ at MIN ($18): Hughes will play his second game since missing over a month due to a shoulder injury. The 20-year-old certainly passed the eye test before getting hurt with two goals and an assist in two games. Soon enough, we likely won't be able to roster Hughes for this cheap. He has a strong opportunity to capitalize tonight, too, as the Wild rank 19th with 2.96 GAA and 17th with an 81.3 percent penalty kill. 

CENTER TO AVOID

Josh Norris, OTT at CAR ($17): Norris has been quite impressive this season with eight goals — four on the power play — and five assists through 19 games, but we should stay away from the 2017 first-round pick tonight. He'll face off against the Hurricanes, who rank third in the league with an 87.7 percent penalty kill. 

WING

Roope Hintz, DAL vs. CLS ($19): One of the league's most underrated young players, Hintz erupted in November with 10 goals and four assists through 11 games. He's not going to continue to score on 29.4 percent of his shots, but he should be able to stay hot against the Blue Jackets' 27th-ranked defense (3.25 GAA). 

Martin Necas, CAR vs. OTT ($18): Necas posted 77 points in 117 games over the last two seasons, and he continues to dazzle this year with his quickness and wicked wrist shot. The 22-year-old has just one point with the man advantage, but we should expect him to get back on track soon considering he's skating on PP1. Thursday provides an appealing opportunity against Ottawa's 28th-ranked PK (74.1 percent). 

WINGS TO AVOID

Oliver Bjorkstrand, CLS at DAL ($20): Bjorkstrand has accrued 19 points through 20 games, but his ice time is slipping lately with just 16:37 over the past five contests after averaging 19:11 through the first 15. He's facing an uphill battle Thursday night against the Stars, who rank 11th with a 2.75 GAA, and his declining opportunities are certainly a concern too. 

Alex Iafallo, LA vs. CGY ($17): Iafallo is fool's gold tonight. He looks like a steal after recording eight goals, seven assists and 68 shots on net through 21 games, but this matchup against the Flames is daunting. Flames goaltender Jacob Markstrom has been phenomenal on the road this year, registering a .956 save percentage and a 1.51 GAA through eight appearances. 

DEFENSE

Devon Toews, COL at MON ($19): Toews has been fantastic this season with 10 points in as many games, including two with the man advantage. He skates on PP2 because Cale Makar mans PP1. There's room for both to make an impact, and Toews flies under the radar at a far more affordable salary. Look for him to cash in against Montreal's 31st-ranked PK (68.1 percent). 

Miro Heiskanen, DAL vs. CLS ($17): Heiskanen continues to log major minutes on the Stars' blue line, and he brings a sturdy floor on a nightly basis with 2.75 shots on goal and 1.5 blocked shots per game. We're aiming for the ceiling, though, and he has compiled three goals and 13 helpers through 20 contests. Heiskanen would be an intriguing stack to go along with Hintz. 

DEFENSEMEN TO AVOID

John Carlson, WAS vs. CHI ($24): Carlson has been remarkable this season and is likely in the Norris conversation, but he may be highly rostered in this matchup because Chicago has mostly been a doormat this year. However, you should stay away from the chalk here. Eight of Carlson's points have been with the man advantage, and Chicago surprisingly ranks eighth in the league with an 84.7 percent penalty kill. 

Erik Johnson, COL at MON ($17): Johnson is probably still fine for cash games because he brings a rock-solid floor with two shots and two blocked shots per game, but he averages 18:30 of ice time with no power-play usage. That means he doesn't have much ceiling even against a struggling Montreal team. 

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