This article is part of our FanDuel NHL series.
Thursday's eight-game slate kicks off at 7:00 p.m. ET with three games, including a matchup between the Hurricanes and Sabres, as Jeff Skinner will face off against his old squad. Dropping the puck at the same time is the Rangers and Lightning, as the latter boasts ex-Rangers Ryan Mcdonagh and Kevin Shattenkirk. In fact, there's multiple "revenge games" in tonight, so don't miss out on the fun. Read on to help navigate the crowded DFS slate and stake your claim.
Anton Khudobin ($7,500) will defend the road crease against the Canucks in the second half of back-to-back outings. The veteran netminder has been magnificent over his last four starts, posting a 3-0-1 record and .940 save percentage. It's tough to take down the Canucks in their barn, however, as they average 4.25 GPG in their home barn.
According to FanDuel Sportsbook, the Wild vs. Coyotes rings up at 5.5 O/U. The Wild battled to a 4-3 win over the Coyotes on Saturday, and neither Devan Dubnyk ($7,400) or Darcy Kuemper ($8,300) were particularly impressive. Kuemper's been much better in November with a .928 save percentage compared to Dubnyk's .906. However, it needs to be said that Kuemper got into a chirping match with his old team during their last meeting, so he runs the risk of another letting intangibles impair his performance.
The Sabres returned home from the NHL Global Series in Sweden, and they haven't played a game on North American soil since Nov. 2. They could be a bit bumpy from the travel and extended time off, and Petr Mrazek ($8,400) could be ready to capitalize. The 27-year-old has an 8-3-1 record and 2.51 GAA, matching up well against the Sabres' 2.88 GPG.
Jonathan Bernier ($7,200) sports a three-game win streak, so coach Jeff Blashill will likely go back to the 31-year-old against the team that drafted him 11th overall in 2006. Bernier's save percentage was below a .900 in two of his victories, but he's poised for a better opportunity now since goalies facing the Kings have recorded a .928 save percentage this year. He's one of the cheapest options in this slate with oodles of upside.
Josh Leivo ($4,500) earned a spot on the top unit partially due to his 51.7 Corsi For percentage, and he's started a whopping 58.7 percent of his shifts in the offensive zone. That will force him into plenty of opportunities against the Stars, and he's proved an ability to convert with nine points in 19 games.
The change of environment is just what Robby Fabbri ($3,500) needed, as he's posted a point in all three games since being traded to the Motor City. It was unclear if Fabbri would ever get back on the track he was destined for after posting 18 goals and 37 points in his rookie season before two torn ACLs, but for now, he looks like that player. A matchup against the Kings' 71.9 percent penalty kill shouldn't slow him down.
Frank Vatrano ($3,700) is on a shooting spree, directing 16 shots on net over five November games. It has paid off to the tune of three goals and a helper. His consistent power-play minutes raise his ceiling against the Jets' subpar penalty kill (73.3 percent).
FORWARD LINE STACKS
Winnipeg Jets (TOTAL: $21,400)
This unit hasn't stacked the scoresheet lately, but we know the potential's there, as the three combined for 102 goals and 98 assists last season. The Panthers floodgates are open, though, as they have allowed 3.56 GPG (28th) and allowed four or more goals three times in the last four contests. This is upside worth chasing.
Anaheim Ducks (TOTAL: $17,600)
The Sharks are coming to town, and they're bringing their 4.00 GAA in road games (28th) with them. This line is heating up, too, as it has combined for three goals and six assists over the past three outings. They averaged a combined 11 shots per game during that span as well, providing a solid floor for fantasy gamers at a reasonable price.
New York Rangers (TOTAL: $17,400)
Panarin carries a personal nine-game point streak into this contest, and while Strome doesn't have a streak of his own, he's accompanied Panarin on the trip with five goals and seven assists in that span. The two have combined for eight power-play points in that span as well, which will come in handy against the Lightning's 75.0 percent penalty-kill rate (25th).
The Rangers' forward line stack can use a defensive touch, and Adam Fox ($3,700) looks like the perfect fit. The rookie keeps piling on, as he's registered seven points in seven games and is shooting plenty. Fox mans the top power play with Panarin and Strome as well. Anthony DeAngelo ($4,900) has five points with the man advantage in as many games, so he's a smart play as well.
If the voting was done today, Cale Makar ($5,500) would run away with the Calder Trophy. The 21-year-old has taken the league by storm with 18 points – eight on the power play – in 18 games. That places him as third the league among defensemen, and it's tough to shy away from this value.
Keith Yandle ($5,600) took a while to get going this year, but he has found his game with nine points – five with the man advantage – over the last seven contests. Winnipeg's a long way from home, so Yandle has a prime opportunity to produce on the power play against the Jets' 73.3 percent penalty-kill rate.