With only a few days until Christmas, we try to bring you some Christmas tidings on “The Playbook”. There are a half dozen games to choose from so pickings are certainly slim. Let’s get to work.

Goalie

This is a slate that features some challenges because yesterday was a mixed bag. Let’s discuss!

Calvin Pickard ($6,900) – It is hard to believe that Pickard has been this hot but he has. This is not a fluke as he frequently faced 35+ shots a night in the WHL. Detroit will be a tough challenge because they are looking to snap out of a scoring slump (5 goals in their last 5 games). Pickard may be one of the few up for it. Note how he stonewalled Pittsburgh until overtime last week. Patrick Roy really has faith in playing the youngster three times in four nights. That could pay off later and now.

Others to consider: Antti Raanta ($9,200), Kari Lehtonen ($8,100). — keep an eye out there as starting goalies will not be confirmed until later today.

Center

Tyler Seguin ($9,300) – This is almost like death and taxes but Seguin hits value nearly 90% of the time. That is pretty rock solid where others can be so hit or miss. It really does not matter who is on his left wing or sometimes center because the young player can be double shifted like the elite players. Edmonton is bad team mired in a 1-12-5 slump with questionable defense and goaltending. This platter is almost served up with the dessert all ready to go.

Claude Giroux  ($8,300) – Playing the high priced plays with a bunch of value guys may be the way to go today as Giroux is in Winnipeg where it has been a bit of a struggle the last few but at some point Ondrej Pavelec has to have a stinker, right? Even if Pavelec plays well, Giroux has five points in his last three games against the goalie and that first line did a lot of damage in Toronto where they still haven’t recovered. He has ten goals on the season and a career shooting percentage a few ticks higher than his current 7.9% shooting percentage. Let’s roll with this one anyway!

Others I like: Evgeni Malkin ($9,000), John Tavares ($6,700), Jori Lehtera ($4,100).

Value: Peter Holland ($3,000), Max Talbot ($2,500).

Winger

Rick Nash ($8,900) – Hey it worked yesterday so why not ride the same two guys again. Nash on the home ice against a weary Hurricanes team almost screams gold! Now Nash did not light the lamp but he did have four shots last night and had some bad luck against Cam Ward. Tonight may be a different story at MSG. The only concern people may have is his five points on the power play but those 20 goals this year are too hard to pass up. It’s a high priced Sunday with a medium slate. Playing at least two or three of these guys will likely determine your success.

Jakub Voracek ($7,400) – With a four assist night, it is safe to say that Voracek had a spanking good time in Toronto with 11 daily points in all. Points may be a bit tougher to come by tonight against Winnipeg’s team defense but at some point Ondrej Pavelec again well, you know. He does not have 42 points on the season by accident and some will argue he is pulling Giroux and not the other way around. Either way, keep starting him and then when you are done, start him some more.

Others I like: Dustin Byfuglien ($5,700), Marian Hossa ($5,200), Jarome Iginla ($4,900).

Value: Alex Tanguay ($2,900), Erik Cole ($2,700), Bryan Bickell ($2,600).

Defence

Justin Faulk ($5,500) – Some will say we should have played Faulk last night but this is a riverboat gambler’s dream. His +/- is a ghastly -12 but his 20 points take any edge off there. No one ever knows how the Rangers will come out on a Sunday night at MSG and with his booming shots from the point, the risk may be worth it. The fun part is to experiment sometimes and see how different DFS combinations work. Faulk and Carolina probably deserved two points last night but maybe Faulk can hit value one more time.

Torey Krug ($5,100) – His defense can be a considerable adventure but his offensive potential is there. Yes his points are off from the 40 point pace last year but the numbers should come up for Krug as Boston gets healthier. Playing a Buffalo team they are familiar with cannot hurt either and that makes Krug a pretty good play considering how he generated three scoring chances a night against them last season. He has points in five of his last seven games and scored the lone goal against the Jets. Things are looking up.

Others I like: Cody Franson ($4,600), Niklas Kronwall ($4,300), Dougie Hamilton ($3,600).

Value: John Klingberg ($3,000), Kevin Klein ($2,900).

Thanks for reading guys and hopefully the picks help you out. If you have any questions, fire them away at me on twitter @ChrisWasselTHW and i’ll do my best to answer them. We will also have a few adds and subtractions as well.

Good luck today!