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2 years agoToronto Maple Leafs forward William Nylander was skating on the third line at the team’s morning skate Saturday. Coach Mike Babcock juggled his line a bit, dropping Nylander from the first line. Nylander had a +/- of -2 in game 4 and has just one assist through four games, and has not been able to make an impact on offense. Toronto must win Saturday night to avoid elimination, and Babcock doesn’t feel Nylander on the first line gives him his best chance to do so. Avoid starting Nylander in DFS. He may not stay on the third line the entire game, but he hasn’t given owners a reason for a second thought thus far in the series.--Kevin Acorn - RotoBallerSource: Chris Johnston on Twitter
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2 years agoToronto Maple Leafs center Nazem Kadri is eligible to return to the lineup after serving a three-game suspension he received in game one for a hit on Boston Bruins Tommy Wingels. At today’s morning skate, Kadri resumed his usual position centering the Leafs second line. This is a good sign for the Leafs, as Kadri is a talented player and had a great regular season. Tomas Plekanec filled in admirably in his absence, but the line looks stronger with Kadri on it. He’ll be playing alongside Mitchell Marner, who has arguably looked the best on the Leafs in the series. This should give both of them a bump in outlook, and could prove for a beneficial DFS start, as the Leafs come out determined to stave off elimination Saturday night.--Kevin Acorn - RotoBallerSource: Chris Johnston on Twitter
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2 years agoTampa Bay Lightning forward Ondrej Palat has been held scoreless over the last two games after scoring four points in the first two games. His scoreless streak on the road put a halt to his blistering start to the series and has understandably caused a dip in his DFS value. Palat did perform better at home in the regular season, shooting 11.5 percent compared to 8.8 percent on the road, so his decline in production in Games 3 and 4 is not too much of a surprise. Look for Palat and Tampa Bay's second line to perform closer to their production in Games 1 and 2 now that the series shifts back to Tampa Bay.--Russ Ivanac - RotoBallerSource: NHL.com
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2 years agoNew Jersey Devils defenseman Sami Vatanen did not travel with his teammates to Tampa Bay for Game 5 but has yet to be officially ruled out for Saturday's contest. Vatanen left Game 4 after a hit from Nikita Kucherov and did not return. Though he is considered day-to-day, it would be a surprise to see him play in Game 5. Vatanen only had one point in four games this series but had logged over 20 minutes of time on ice in every game except Game 4. The impact of Vatanen's absence will likely impact the Tampa Bay forwards more than anyone, giving them a more favorable matchup than usual.--Russ Ivanac - RotoBallerSource: Amanda Stein
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2 years agoWinnipeg Jets goaltender Connor Hellebuyck held off all 30 shots in Game 5 to shut out the Minnesota Wild and earn his first playoff series victory. Helleybuyck checks off another personal and franchise milestone with his victory Friday, backing the Jets to their first playoff series victory as well. Hellebuyck has been officially nominated for the Vezina trophy along with Nashville's Pekka Rinne and Tampa Bay's Andrei Vasilevskiy, and he continues to give reasons why he should win the award. The postseason is far from over but if he keeps up his play over the last two games, he should have the Vezina and the Stanley Cup in his pocket.--aayushdasSource: Nhl.com
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2 years agoWinnipeg Jets forward Nikolaj Ehlers was not on the ice during warmups for Game 5 against the Minnesota Wild. Ehlers got off to a good start in this series, grabbing two assists and sending six shots on net in four games. The Jets will be extra thankful to have Myers back in the lineup, as this latest injury starts to weaken their roster. Tucker Poolman will stay in the lineup and Matt Hendricks will step in for Ehlers.--aayushdasSource: Elliotte Friedman Twitter
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2 years agoWashington Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby stopped 23 shots in a 4-1 win against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Thursday night. Holtby was less than 14 minutes away from completing the shutout when Columbus forward Boone Jenner tipped a shot right in front of him to make it 3-1. After a disappointing regular season, Holtby has regained the starting job from Philipp Grubauer and has not disappointed, winning both games he's started while posting a stunning .940 save percentage and 1.33 goals-against average in three appearances. With his newfound confidence, expect Holtby to play more like the goalie who won the Vezina in 2016.--Barry MilesSource: TSN
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2 years agoColumbus Blue Jackets goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 29 of 32 shots in a 4-1 loss in Game 4's matchup against the Washington Capitals on Thursday night. Washington has been peppering Bobrovsky with shots in this series, averaging 41 per contest, while the reigning Vezina winner sports a solid .921 save percentage. Bob played well enough in this game but the offense just wasn't there, as the Jackets were nearly shut out by Braden Holtby. Expect Columbus to respond on Saturday afternoon.--Barry MilesSource: TSN
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2 years agoWashington Capitals forward Evgeny Kuznetsov scored an empty-net goal and three assists in Thursday night's 4-1 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets. The Russian star now has three goals and six points in four games this postseason, tying captain Alex Ovechkin for the team lead. Kuznetsov had a piece of every single Caps goal, as the top line was the only one able to convert at even strength. He also had the primary assist on TJ Oshie's power-play goal midway through the second period. Along with five shots on net, Kuzy had his best playoff game to date.--Barry MilesSource: TSN
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2 years agoWinnipeg Jets backup goaltender Steve Mason left practice due to an undisclosed injury and Michael Hutchinson has been recalled by the Jets. Mason's play during the regular season was weak, as he posted a .906 save percentage and 3.24 goals-against average over 13 games, but he did stop all seven shots he faced in relief for Connor Hellebuyck in Game 3. Hutchinson did not fare much better than Mason in the regular season, posting only a .907 save percentage and 3.26 goals-against average in three games. Although he has a small sample size in the NHL this season, Hutchinson has been great on the Jets minor league affiliate, the Manitoba Moose, registering a .935 save percentage and 2.08 goals-against average. Hopefully, none of this will matter because as long as Connor Hellebuyck stays healthy, the Jets will keep him rolling.--aayushdasSource: TSN.ca
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2 years agoWashington Capitals forward T.J. Oshie has been playing through an injury during the Caps matchup against the Columbus Blue Jackets. As a result, the 31-year-old has been missing practices and morning skates for what the team has been calling "maintenance." Despite this, Oshie has still managed three points in four games, including two power-play goals and 13 shots on net. Keep that piece of information in mind when selecting your daily lineups in DFS leagues.--Barry MilesSource: Washington Post
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2 years agoWashington Capitals forward Andre Burakovsky will require minor surgery for an undisclosed upper-body injury he suffered in Game 2 against the Columbus Blue Jackets. Head coach Barry Trotz made it clear that the young forward is not necessarily out for the rest of the postseason, as their series with the Jackets is now tied at 2-2 following Thursday night's road victory. Burakovsky was playing on the second line with Nicklas Backstrom and TJ Oshie prior to the injury and was finally starting to produce with six points in his last eight regular season games before sustaining the injury.--Barry MilesSource: Washington Post
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2 years agoWinnipeg Jets defenseman Tyler Myers was spotted during warmups and confirmed that he will be back on the blue line for Game 5. Myers had left Game 3 with a lower-body injury after a collision along the boards with Minnesota Wild forward Marcus Foligno. Myers was chugging along nicely with two goals and an assist in the series, including a goal and three shots on net in Game 3. The Jets will be relieved to have Myers' big frame and quick feet back, especially with Josh Morrissey suspended for Game 5 after an illegal hit to the head of Eric Staal. The Wild will come out with the intensity and desperation of an elimination game, so the Jets defensemen will have to be at their if Winnipeg hopes to close out the series Friday.--aayushdasSource: TSN.ca
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2 years agoPittsburgh Penguins winger Patric Hornqvist will miss Friday's game versus the Flyers. This will be the second straight game Hornqvist has missed, which should cause a bit of concern moving forward. Luckily, the Penguins have been doing just fine in his absence, as they put up five goals in Game 4. His injury has provided an opening for both Dominik Simon and Jake Guentzel, who are now seeing time on the first forward line and the first power play respectively. The Penguins have a chance to close out the series with a win, but only time will tell if Hornqvist is truly missed on the offense.--Tom Vecchio - RotoBallerSource: Pittsburgh Penguins Twitter
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2 years agoColorado Avalanche defenseman Samuel Girard will be a game-time decision for Friday's Game 5 in Nashville. Girard's status is immensely important for an Avalanche team seeking to stave off elimination. Not only would the Avs get to plug Girard back into their top-four defensive group, but his return would allow the team to adequately shift a defenseman down to more appropriate minutes. Girard played 22:07 and had four shots on net in his only contest back in Game 1.--Chase Davis - RotoBallerSource: Mike Chambers

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