DraftKings NHL: Thursday Breakdown

DraftKings NHL: Thursday Breakdown

This article is part of our DraftKings NHL series.

Thursday's NHL slate is a massive one, with 13 games on the docket after 7:00 p.m. EDT. Below, you'll find suggested options for crafting an effective DraftKings DFS lineup. All game lines and odds used below come courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.

SLATE PREVIEW

There are plenty of lineup building strategies you can employ with so many options to choose from, but a few teams stand out as the top ones to build around. The Jets at home against Montreal, Stars in Arizona and Panthers in San Jose are the largest favorites, while the highest-scoring game Thursday is projected to be Devils-Oilers, which checks in with an over/under of 7.0 goals.

GOALIES

Connor Hellebuyck, WPG vs. MON ($8,600): Hellebuyck's been busy but effective for the Jets, notching a 4-2-1 record, 2.41 GAA and .931 save percentage. The 2020 Vezina Trophy on his mantel suggests he's keeping up this strong play, and Hellebuyck should be worth paying up for on home ice against a Canadiens team that's mustered no more than one goal in four of its first 10 games.

Jacob Markstrom, CGY vs. NSH ($8,300): Markstrom's off to a bit of a slow start after being a top-three goalie last season, but his teammates have picked up the slack, helping the Swede notch a 4-1-0 record and 2.60 GAA despite a subpar .903 save percentage. With the Flames' defensive system paying dividends, Markstrom could be set up for a breakout performance if he can find his top form at home against a bottom-five Nashville offense that's producing only 2.60 goals per game.

Spencer Martin, VAN vs. ANH ($8,000): If Martin gets the nod, he'll be an appealing option against the 30th-ranked Ducks offense (2.50 goals per game). Dating back to last season, Martin has gone undefeated in regulation for the Canucks, posting a 4-0-4 record with a 1.91 GAA and .944 save percentage. Despite that success, he continues to yield most of the playing time to Thatcher Demko, who was outstanding last season but is off to a 1-6-1 start. Demko would also have upside in this favorable matchup, but he'd be a far riskier play.

Ilya Sorokin, NYI at STL ($7,400): The Islanders excel at playing their throwback brand of hockey, dragging opponents into the mud by clogging the neutral zone and relying on their goaltender when the opposition gets behind the defense. With Sorokin in net, that strategy has been quite successful, as he's been sharp to start the season en route to a 4-3-0 record, 2.04 GAA and .935 save percentage. He's available for only $7,400 in what should be a tough road matchup in St. Louis, though the Blues are actually bringing up the rear in scoring at the moment with just 2.38 goals per game.

VALUE PLAYS/ONE-OFFS

Kyle Connor, WPG vs. MON ($6,800): Connor has been snakebitten to start the season, so this is a nice buy-low opportunity on the 25-year-old winger, who lit the lamp 47 times last season. His 47-goal campaign came on a sustainable 14.8 shooting percentage, which is right in line with Connor's career mark of 14.9 percent. What's unsustainable is his minuscule 3.0 percent in 2022-23 (one goal on 33 shots). Connor's too good to be kept down much longer, so expect a breakout performance to come imminently.

Jack Hughes, NJ at EDM ($6,700): Both of these teams have gotten multiple swings at the first overall pick in the past handful of years, and while New Jersey would have preferred to have that opportunity in 2015, the Devils got themselves quite a talented player at the top of the 2019 NHL Entry Draft. The 5-foot-11, 175-pound Hughes is listed as only two inches shorter and 18 pounds lighter than Connor McDavid ($9,900), but you'd think McDavid is twice his size based on the way they play. What Hughes lacks in size, he makes up for in elusiveness, as it's extremely difficult to line him up for a hit or knock him off the puck. His speed and puck skills have allowed Hughes to rack up a 3-4-7 output during his current four-game point streak, and he has a 30-36-66 line in 59 appearances since the start of last season.

Trevor Zegras, ANH at VAN ($5,800): Toiling away on a lowly Ducks team, Zegras sometimes doesn't get the recognition he deserves as one of the game's most exciting young talents. He has a 4-1-5 line over the past five games and has put at least three pucks on net in all but one of those games. The 21-year-old American has a nice opportunity to add to his recent production against a Canucks team that's surrendering 4.00 goals per game.

Jonathan Toews, CHI vs. LA ($5,000): Toews has already lit the lamp six times, and four of those goals have come during his current six-game point streak. Chicago's captain is showing he still has some quality hockey left in him, and a Kings team that's allowing 3.92 goals per game will be hard pressed to cool him off.

Colin White, FLA at SJ ($2,900): White has been a consistent source of secondary scoring for the Panthers early on, chipping in a 3-5-8 line through 10 games. All eight of those points have come at even strength, and that's where the Panthers are likely to establish their dominance in this one, as the Sharks are 3-8-1 despite boasting the league's second-stingiest penalty kill at 94.4 percent.

FORWARD LINE STACKS

Stars at Coyotes

Roope Hintz (C - $6,500), Jason Robertson (W - $7,000), Joe Pavelski (W - $5,300)

This has been one of the most productive trios in the NHL dating back to last season, and you can lock in this entire group at surprisingly affordable valuations against one of the four teams that's currently allowing at least four goals per game. Robertson's 5-8-13 line includes a 3-3-6 output during his current three-game goal streak. Hintz has a 3-2-5 line over that same three-game stretch and a 5-7-12 output overall, while Pavelski's the only member of this line that's shy of a point-per-game pace, though not by much; the veteran has five goals and nine points through 10 games.

Oilers vs. Devils

Leon Draisaitl (C - $8,500), Evander Kane (W - $7,500), Kailer Yamamoto (W - $2,500)

The Oilers' top line is exorbitantly expensive, and while this second line is far from cheap, you'll at least have reasonable buying power remaining if you lock in this trio. Scoring projects to be plentiful in this game, so look for both Draisaitl and Kane to get plenty of opportunities. Draisaitl is just one point back of McDavis's league-high 22 through 10 games, while Kane shoots more than either superstar, as his team-high 42 shots have helped him produce a 5-6-11 line. Yamamoto has helpers in two of his last three games and offers cap relief while increasing your lineup's upside when paired with Draisaitl and Kane.

Canucks vs. Ducks

Bo Horvat (C - $6,300), J.T. Miller (W - $5,200), Conor Garland (W - $3,900)

Anaheim's 4.30 goals allowed per game are the most among any team in action Thursday, and Vancouver's top line should take advantage of this favorable matchup. Horvat's tied for third in the league with eight goals through 10 games. Miller's the best value on this line, as he produced a 32-67-99 line last season, so his 5-4-9 output through 10 games is more than sustainable. Garland's bounced around the lineup and has even been benched, but this is the time to deploy him, as he's back in the coach's good graces and skating on the top line while having produced a 1-2-3 line in his last three games.

DEFENSEMEN

Erik Karlsson, SJ vs. FLA ($7,300): The Panthers outscore the opposition rather than shut opponents down, so Karlsson should have plenty of opportunities to add to his magnificent recent production despite the Sharks being substantial home underdogs. He has found his long-lost vintage form to begin 2022-23, totaling a 9-6-15 line through 10 games. Karlsson has been even better lately, with a 6-3-9 line in his last three games alone.

Miro Heiskanen, DAL at ARI ($4,700): If you're stacking Stars in Arizona, don't forget about the team's top defenseman. Heiskanen has a 2-3-5 line in only seven appearances, and he's totaled at least three shots on goal in five of his last six appearances. His scoring output has been underwhelming relative to expectations in recent seasons, but at only 23 years old, the third overall pick in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft still has time to take his offense to the next level, and Dallas' willingness to let John Klingberg walk in the offseason suggests the Stars see more scoring in Heiskanen's future. That future could be now against the lowly Coyotes.

Alec Martinez, VGK at OTT ($4,500): Martinez doesn't deliver nearly as much offense as fellow Vegas blueliners Alex Pietrangelo ($6,500) and Shea Theodore ($5,100), but Martinez's shot blocking ability gives him a high floor. He has blocked at least three shots in every game this season and compiled 34 blocks over the last six. As a result, Martinez has racked up at least 9.5 fantasy points in eight of 11 games.

Dmitry Orlov, WAS at DET ($4,200): With John Carlson (lower body) sidelined, Orlov has been promoted to Washington's top power-play unit. Orlov's a steady source of well-rounded production, but his ceiling has been raised substantially by Carlson's absence, and Orlov's poised to capitalize on his usage with the extra man against a Red Wings team that's allowing 3.56 goals per game – ninth-most in the NHL.

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 has been contributing NFL, NHL, NBA, MLB and Tennis content to RotoWire since 2015, with an emphasis on DFS. He is a huge New York sports fan who has been playing fantasy sports since middle school.
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