It's a straightforward Friday for the NHL. There are three games on the schedule, and no team is on the second leg of a back-to-back. It's a big sports weekend. You may have heard about that. For now, here are my guys to target, and to avoid, for your DFS lineups.
Jonathan Quick, NYR at CHI ($35): Quick started the last game before the All-Star break, and notably the first two games back. He's also only allowed a single goal in those two post-break outings. Will the Rangers ride the proverbial hot hand? If so, Quick catches the opposite of a hot team. The Blackhawks have done what once seemed unthinkable: They are now last in goals per game, falling behind even the Sharks.
GOALIE TO AVOID
Marc-Andre Fleury, MIN vs. PIT ($22): Fleury has gotten the call against his former team, but that's as much a nostalgia play as the veteran gets closer to retirement. The 39-year-old has an .897 save percentage. Both the Wild and Penguins have averaged 2.96 goals per game, but the Penguins have averaged 33.2 shots on net per contest, so their offense is a smidge more imposing.
Vincent Trocheck, NYR at CHI ($20): Trocheck has hit the 30-assist mark, and also has 15 goals on 122 shots on net. It helps that he has Artemi Panarin on his wing, and also that he's on the top power-play unit. Chicago isn't as bad defensively as it is offensively, but its 3.49 GAA isn't exactly pristine.
CENTER TO AVOID
Joel Eriksson Ek, MIN vs. PIT ($24): Eriksson Ek has been held without a point in two games in a row after a hot run, and given that those games were against Chicago and Anaheim, that feels like an abrupt stop. Additionally, the Swede has tallied 13 of his 39 points with the extra man, and the Penguins have a top-10 penalty kill.
Evander Kane, EDM at ANA ($21): The Oilers torrid run has featured Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl centering separate lines, which distributes out the opportunity to play with a top-five center to more guys. Kane is currently on Draisaitl's wing. On the year he has 15 goals and 14 assists in 45 contests. The Ducks have allowed 32.7 shots on net per contest, a big reason why they have a 3.40 GAA.
Reilly Smith, PIT at MIN ($14): Smith returned from injury after the All-Star break, and notably was slotted onto the top power-play unit. On the year he has six points with the extra man in 41 games. The Wild rank 30th on the penalty kill, so if Smith stays in that role, that bodes well.
WINGS TO AVOID
Troy Terry, ANA vs. EDM ($24): Terry was hot before the break, but so were the Oilers. On the year they've allowed 28.0 shots on net per game, and they have a top-five penalty kill as well. Plus, speaking of hot players, over his last 12 starts Stuart Skinner has an 1.33 GAA and .952 save percentage.
Rickard Rakell, PIT at MIN ($17): Rakell was added by the Penguins with the goal of placing him on Evgeni Malkin's wing. Last year, it worked, but this year has been rough. In addition to having a 6.0 shooting percentage on the year, Rakell has been dropped down to the third line. Over his last four games he's averaged 14:31 in ice time, and it seems like he's also lost his spot on the top power-play unit.
Kris Letang, PIT at MIN ($22): Letang has 30 points in 47 games, which is reason enough as is to slot him into your DFS lineup in a good matchup. I did mention that Fleury has an .897 save percentage for the Wild. However, while Letang has spent much of the season on the sidelines while the Penguins have been on the power play, he's averaged 2:10 per game with the extra man over his last nine outings.
K'Andre Miller, NYR at CHI ($13): Miller hasn't scored a goal in a while, but he does still have seven on the season. On top of that, he has three assists over his last six contests. The Blackhawks have a 3.49 GAA, but have also allowed 32.2 shots on net per game.
DEFENSE TO AVOID
Brock Faber, MIN vs. PIT ($23): Faber has played a huge role for the Wild, but while that is a positive, it doesn't guarantee success. Tristan Jarry has a 2.45 GAA and .916 save percentage, and the Penguins have a top-10 penalty kill. While Faber will likely be on the ice a ton, they may be fruitless minutes.
Seth Jones, CHI vs. NYR ($17): Jones is, at present, the last man standing for Chicago. That makes it kind of hard to score, even on the power play. If that wasn't enough, the Rangers have a top-eight penalty kill and have allowed a mere 28.3 shots on goal per contest.