Pekka Rinne, NSH vs. LA ($7,900) – The Kings have won two straight but keep in mind that one of them was in overtime, when it’s anybody’s game, and the other was a 3-0 shutout against a lackluster Stars team that allowed 42 shots and received zero production from their top line. On the other hand, the Preds have won six of their past 10 games, and Rinne was victorious in his previous start against the Kings on Jan. 6.
Vincent Trocheck, FLA at BUF ($6,900) – Despite not playing on the top line, Trocheck is one of three Panthers to have scored at least 40 points this season. With 18 goals in 48 games, he’s on pace for 30 — something he’s never done in junior or pro — and the Sabres are an easy target with an abysmal defense and home record. Trocheck is a high-volume shooter, which bodes well for his fantasy production.
Brayden Point, TB at CGY ($6,000) – Point has been sharp lately, riding a four-game point streak with two goals and three assists. He has outscored Nikita Kucherov (10 goals) and Steven Stamkos (six goals) with 11 goals in the past two months, and after ripping off a seven-game winning streak, the Flames are once again mired in another slump.
Patrick Kane, CHI at VAN ($7,400) – Kane has made a living tormenting the Canucks, scoring 31 points in 35 career games against them, and this was during the height of the Sedin era. As much as the Blackhawks are struggling, they should still have enough firepower to take advantage of the Canucks’ depleted defense and inconsistent goaltending.
Brock Boeser, VAN vs. CHI ($6,700) – He’s the Canucks’ top offensive weapon, and late in the game against the Avalanche on Tuesday, Boeser was one the ice for more than a minute on five of his seven shifts in the third period, including a 96-second marathon late in the game. He directed eight shots on net, quadrupling the next highest forward, and he will be “that guy” for the rest of the season. Defense has not been a strong suit for the Blackhawks this season, who remain without starting goalie Corey Crawford.
Jack Roslovic, WPG vs. VGK ($4,100) – Roslovic is a tantalizing talent who is getting his first crack in the NHL after scoring 35 points in 35 games for AHL Manitoba this season. After starting at the bottom of the depth chart, Roslovic skated 16 minutes on the top line with Patrik Laine and Blake Wheeler against Tampa on Tuesday. The 21-year-old is the best high-risk, high-reward winger Thursday.
John Klingberg, DAL at ARI ($6,700) – Ken Hitchcock won’t let the Stars’ performance in Tuesday’s shutout loss against the Kings happen again, if the notoriously demanding coach has his way. The Coyotes are an ideal team to bounce back against because a) they don’t seem to play with a lot of good structure, b) the Stars have beaten them five straight times, and c) they’re the worst team in the league.
Jake Gardiner, TOR at NYR ($5,000) – He’s stepped up big time in Morgan Rielly’s absence, and over the past five games has notched nine assists and logged over 24 minutes per game. With Nikita Zaitsev returning to the lineup, this also gives Gardiner a little more confidence to rush the puck knowing his partner can cover for him.