The NHL Game Breakdown keeps on keeping on here on DraftKings. We take an in-depth look at all of the games on the schedule each day in terms of expected pace of play, Vegas lines, and defense vs. position match ups.

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Injury Updates

The news is coming in as always but keep an eye on Ryan Getzlaf, who was a late scratch against Nashville last night. He may be out tonight also. As always, you can follow me on Twitter for the latest injury news.

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Ducks @ Capitals

Game Analysis

This is a game that looked like it had a lot of firepower but apparently Ryan Getzlaf has a lower body injury that he hurt worse Thursday night during warm-ups. His status is definitely in question. That will have an impact on Corey Perry but will bump some players up if he should be held out again on Friday night. What will Cam Fowler and particularly Sami Vatanen do on the power play against an improved Washington team. Now the Capitals played in Ottawa last night and Alex Ovechkin will have Nicklas Backstrom but it looks like Mike Green may be questionable with a knee injury. Keep an eye to see if the backup goalies get some action on Friday. That would change the scoring dynamic considerably. The Ducks have plenty of scoring depth but it seems like it has been considerably hit and miss lately. Rickard Rakell and Jacob Sifverberg have been nice finds along with Kyle Palmieri and Matt Beleskey. The Capitals have their fair share of bottom six depth and yet Troy Brouwer seems to always score goals when it is needed most.

Money Line: NL for now

Players to Watch

  • Rickard Rakell, C, Ducks ($2600)
  • Sami Vatanen, D, Ducks ($4600)
  • Eric Fehr, RW, Caps ($4100)
  • John Carlson, D, Caps ($5600)

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Maple Leafs @ Devils

Game Analysis

These two teams are horrendous in every way. The Maple Leafs have lost ten straight games and worse the last three have really been by one or two goals with pretty good possession numbers and lots of chances. However, nothing seems to go in the net when they need that timely goal. In some cases, their goaltending just flat out fails them too. This is a very bad combo. The last time these two played felt like a root canal and a wisdom tooth extraction at once yet Cory Schneider made 29 saves in a 2-1 shootout win. Schneider has been a top five goalie since November 1st with a .927 save percentage and a .935 even strength save percentage. It may be James Reimer in net for Toronto as they have lost ten straight. Reimer played well in spot duty against Nashville but often has a bad time against New Jersey (given up three or more goals in three of his last five starts against them). New Jersey still seems to not have the right players on the right lines. Michael Cammalleri probably should be on a line with Jaromir Jagr and Adam Henrique but is instead on the third line. Toronto and Phil Kessel is struggling because of the Nazem Kadri-Tyler Bozak yo-yo effect. No one really has a clue what could happen in this one but the goalies will likely be the vital pieces here.

Line: Devils -145. O/U 5

Players to Watch

  • James Van Riemsdyk, LW, Leafs ($6600)
  • James Reimer, G, Leafs ($6600)
  • Adam Larsson, D, Devils ($3700)
  • Adam Henrique, C, Devils ($4600)

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Blues @ Blue Jackets

Game Analysis

The ugly part of this game will be it features a Blues team coming off a kind of ho-hum game the night before against Buffalo. That usually doesn’t get the juices flowing but they better be ready for Columbus. Yes the Blue Jackets are done when it comes to postseason play (just a formality) but they do play hard even if it can be rather undisciplined play. There are lots of stack plays as far as St. Louis is concerned. However, take a look at Paul Stastny as he is playing a lot of minutes lately and that is the type of player that could sneak up on DFS radars. Columbus obviously has Ryan Johansen and Cam Atkinson along with Nick Foligno. After that, it really is hit and miss. The defense is inconsistent at best. Goaltending is just a huge minus without Sergei Bobrovsky. The Blues are among the top six in possession numbers over the last 14 games and their record reflects that…just a mere loss beyond regulation in that span. Brian Elliott gets the start in this one and has been one of the most consistent goalies the past few seasons. No one should be surprised here in the least.

Line: Blues -170 . O/U 5. (money line may come down a bit).

Players to Watch

  • Paul Stastny, C, Blues ($5000)
  • Alex Pietrangelo, D, Blues ($5000)
  • Ryan Johansen, C, Blue Jackets ($6400)
  • Curtis McElhinney, G, Blue Jackets ($6700)

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Blackhawks @ Jets

Game Analysis

Here come the Hawks! The not so mighty Blackhawks? It has been a weird sort of struggle with Chicago. Contrasted pricing will drive DFS owners cuckoo. For example Dustin Byfuglien and Jonathan Toews are way down along with Seabrook and Keith but Patrick Sharp is still above the $8000 mark. That is just how it is sometimes with pricing. IT is up to the DFS player to ascertain what is true price per point value for them and roll with it. Add in the drama with the Evander Kane situation that keep evolving or devolving depending on who you believe, is a distraction that will be tough for Winnipeg to cope with. The Little line as usual will be prevalent but now Dustin Byfuglien will be on the second line for the foreseeable future. The Hawks have to keep rolling their lines and the production should start to come. Will Corey Crawford start? That answer is yes. Chicago has the goalie advantage no matter who Winnipeg starts right now. The Jets are struggling mightily. Can they snap out of it. The gut says not yet and stack some Chicago players for once.

Line: Blackhawks -155, O/U 5.5

Players to Watch

  • Jonathan Toews, C, Blackhawks ($5400)
  • Patrick Sharp, LW, Blackhawks ($8100)
  • Dustin Byfuglien, D, Jets ($5100)
  • Bryan Little, C, Jets ($5700)

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Penguins @ Flames

Game Analysis

The Penguins did not score like many expected against Edmonton but they were pretty effectively defensively in their shutout win. A win is a win and it was Marc Andre-Fleury’s seventh shutout on the season already. Kris Letang may be too high priced for most on this night so going with the Flames defensive top pairing might be a decent alternative…especially Brodie. Even the Giordano price has dipped below $7000. Can the Pittsburgh power play start clicking. Thanks to Neil Parker for this but their power play point potential is almost out of the top five. They were by far and away the number one team early in the season by a double digit margin. That is quite a fall. People will also like to know that Fleury will start against Jonas Hiller. Calgary has quite an offensive thrust all their own. It starts with their center play and their top four defensemen. Sprinkle in some Johnny Gaudreau and a hot Michael Backlund and you have a team that just does not give up. Expect some fireworks in this one but maybe not the 5-4 game some are expecting. More advanced numbers will be available on Twitter by late Friday.

Line: Penguins -115, O/U 5.5

Players to Watch

  • Evgeni Malkin, C, Penguins ($8600)
  • Kris Letang, D, Penguins ($8300)
  • Jiri Hudler, C, Flames ($4400)
  • Joe Colborne, C, Flames ($3500)

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