DraftKings NHL: Friday Breakdown

DraftKings NHL: Friday Breakdown

This article is part of our DraftKings NHL series.

Friday's five-game NHL slate begins at 7:00 p.m. EST. Below, you'll find a breakdown of the action and suggested options for crafting an effective lineup.


Three of the Friday's five games feature significant favorites. Those are the Golden Knights (in Arizona), the Rangers (vs. San Jose) and the Jets (vs. New Jersey), with the visitors in each of the latter two games playing for the second time in as many nights. Those games should have some pieces to build around, but so will Oilers-Kraken, which has an over/under a full goal higher than the other four games (6.5 goals). The Flames closing out a back-to-back set in Anaheim rounds out this small but exciting slate of games.


Robin Lehner, VGK at ARI ($8,500): Using the goalie facing the Coyotes has worked out more often than not, as Arizona's averaging a league-low 1.83 goals per game. Lehner's in a bit of a cold spell, having allowed 15 goals in his last four outings, but he enjoyed a 7-2-0 stretch directly preceding his recent stumble, and the Golden Knights are as healthy in front of him as they've been all year. 

Igor Shesterkin, NYR vs. SJ ($8,300): Shesterkin's a strong choice any time he guards the crease for the Rangers. He's 12-3-2 with a 2.15 GAA and .935 save percentage, ranking second in wins and third in save percentage among goalies with at least seven appearances. The Russian's also showing no signs of slowing down, having allowed no more than two goals in any of his last six games.

Daniel Vladar, CGY at ANH ($7,700): Anaheim's offense has gone from one of the worst in recent seasons to one of the best this year, but Vladar has been outstanding in his own right with a 4-0-1 record, 1.57 GAA and .946 save percentage. The hot start makes him worthy of consideration any time he defends Calgary's crease, and Vladar's slated to start after Jacob Markstrom defeated the Kings on Thursday.

Karel Vejmelka, ARI vs. VGK ($7,200): Circling back to Vegas-Arizona, this game pits the expensive chalk choice in Lehner against the risky value play in Vejmelka. The rookie has been in the zone lately, setting aside 83 of 84 shots en route to consecutive wins. Prior to this pair of outstanding performances, Vejmelka had been 0-9-1.


Kyle Connor, WPG vs. NJ ($7,900): Connor ranks seventh league-wide in goals (14), and his 100 shots through 22 games have him just two shy of Ovechkin's league-leading total, and Connor has played two fewer games. The three-time 30-goal scorer should have no trouble building on this strong start against a tired and struggling Devils team. The Devils are flying in from Minnesota, where they lost 5-2 Thursday to drop to 2-5-2 in their last nine games. 

Jonathan Marchessault, VGK at ARI ($5,400): Marchessault had a seven-game point streak snapped by the Ducks on Wednesday, but he still boasts an excellent 7-3-10 line over his last eight games. Despite that recent success, Marchessault remains quite affordable at $5,400 heading into this matchup with a Coyotes team that's been better defensively of late but is still allowing 3.48 goals per game overall, tied with Seattle for fourth-most league-wide.

Andrew Mangiapane, CGY at ANH ($5,100): Not only is Mangiapane lighting the lamp regularly, but he's doing most of his damage on the road. He has 16 goals in 23 games overall and 15 in 14 road contests. Good luck to the Ducks, who have allowed four or more goals in four of their last five games. They'll need it to keep Mangiapane off the scoresheet.

Pavel Zacha, NJ at WPG ($4,600): It's been a slog for New Jersey's power play in the early going, but Zacha's tied with pricey blueliner Dougie Hamilton for the team lead with four power-play points, while no other teammate has more than two. Zacha's featured role with the extra man could pay off against the 31st-ranked Winnipeg penalty kill, which is denying just 68.9 percent of opposing opportunities.

Sam Steel, ANH vs. CGY ($2,500): Steel filled in for Ryan Getzlaf (lower body) on the top line Wednesday and came away with an assist. At the minimum $2,500 valuation, Steel will be worth a look if Getzlaf remains sidelined Friday, even with the stingy Flames in town.


Jets vs. Devils

Pierre-Luc Dubois (C - $6,300), Nikolaj Ehlers (W - $6,600), Andrew Copp (W - $5,000)

Connor leads the Jets with 14 goals and 24 points, but the next three spots in both categories are all occupied by members of this highly productive second line. Dubois boasts an 11-7-18 line, Copp's hot on his heels at 6-11-17 and Ehlers has added a 6-7-13 line. You don't have to break the bank to lock in this trio in its entirety, but picking and choosing from this line could also be a prudent option considering its priciest member has also been its least productive to date. Either way, a Devils team that's allowed 16 goals in its last four games may not put up much resistance.

Oilers at Kraken

Connor McDavid (C - $9,500), Zach Hyman (W - $5,900), Zack Kassian (W - $2,500)

Thanks to a pair of four-point performances over the past three games, McDavid's back within one point of Leon Draisaitl's ($9,300) league-leading total. Both have already reached the 40-point threshold and are strong plays against the defensively challenged Kraken (3.48 goals allowed per game), but McDavid's the hotter of the two. As for the rest of this line, Hyman's the hottest Oiler this side of the two superstars. He ranks third on the team with 11 goals, including three on nine shots in the past two games. Kassian brings a physical element to this line and has chipped in a 1-3-4 line in his last three games. 

Rangers vs. Sharks

Mika Zibanejad (C - $6,400), Chris Kreider (W - $6,200), Kaapo Kakko (W - $3,500)

New York's red-hot top line will face a challenging matchup against Sharks netminder James Reimer (2.05 GAA, .934 save percentage), but San Jose will have some tired legs after needing overtime to hand the lowly Islanders their ninth consecutive defeat Thursday. Zibanejad has become an annual slow starter (it's not too late to buy low if you also play season-long formats), but he has kept his value afloat with a 4-13-17 line in 21 games, and his 7.7 shooting percentage is due to tick up eventually considering the sniper hasn't finished below 12.7 percent in any of the last four seasons, with his last campaign in single digits coming way back in 2012-13. Kreider's tied with Mangiapane for third league-wide with 16 goals, and Kakko is one of the best value options in this slate, as the 2019 second-overall pick has found his offensive game, with the entirety of Kakko's 3-5-8 line this season coming in the past seven games.


Tyson Barrie, EDM at SEA ($5,500): Barrie got off to a slow start, but last season's leader in points among defensemen has found his offensive game with four assists during his active three-game point streak. He's sharing the ice with Edmonton's elite talent up front more while Darnell Nurse recovers from a finger injury, and this favorable matchup could be Barrie's last chance to capitalize on extra non-Nurse minutes, as Nurse could be back as soon as Sunday.

Erik Karlsson, SJ at NYR ($4,900): Karlsson's back in a groove offensively, offering excellent upside at his sub-$,5000 valuation. He has a goal in each of the past two games, having just scored the overtime winner against the Islanders, and Karlsson's 5-8-13 line through 17 games includes a 2-3-5 output over the past five.

Vince Dunn, SEA vs. EDM ($4,300): Dunn's enjoying life on the top power-play unit with Mark Giordano in COVID-19 protocols, having racked up a goal and an assist with the extra man over the past three games, as well as three shots in each of the past two contests. With 10 points through 21 games, Dunn's on pace to surpass the 35 he mustered in 78 games for St. Louis as a 22-year-old in 2018-19.

Zach Whitecloud, VGK at ARI ($4,100): Whitecloud has been quietly effective when available, though he missed almost a month with a lower-body injury. He has racked up a 3-1-4 line to go with 19 shots and 27 blocked shots through 10 games, so Whitecloud brings a high floor to the table as a result of his two-way production heading into this trip to Arizona.

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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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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