TUUKKA RASK IS A MUST-HAVE IN DAILY PLAY THURSDAY
For Thursday, Oct. 3, there are eight games in the National Hockey League. The Los Angeles-Minnesota (8:00pm ET) is nationally televised on NBC Sports Network.
It is Opening Night in the NHL, Part Trois, as seven of Thursday's eight teams drop the puck for the first time this season. We've already seen the Washington Capitals play, and they look to atone for a road loss Tuesday in Chitown.
The Tampa Bay Lightning have been awful over the years in Boston, going just 4-25-4 in their past 33 meetings in Beantown. In fact, the Lightning is just 18-41-5 in their past 64 meetings overall against the Bruins. The home team is 38-18-5 in the past 61 games in this series.
(DraftStreet.com salaries in parantheses)
PLAY IN THE $500 FREEROLL AT DRAFTSTREET.COM TONIGHT!!!
THESE SEVEN WILL BE HEAVENLY
Jaroslav Halak, G, St. Louis ($18443 vs NSH): Halak will be facing a Nashville Predators team that struggled to score goals last season. In fact, if you follow Vegas and totals, the line for this game is five. Vegas expects a low-scoring slog, and generally when these teams meet, it is very defensive. The 'under' has cashed in seven of the past nine meetings in St. Louis, and is 44-14-2 in the past 62 meetings overall in this series. That means, sparkling numbers for Fantasy goaltenders.
Jannik Hansen, RW, Vancouver ($6656 at SJ): Hansen is a top-six forward at a bottom six price. He rolled up 10 goals with 27 points and a plus-12 rating in 47 games last season, and he is not shy about shooting the puck. Fresh off signing a four-year extension, he might be giving a little extra effort in the opener.
Valeri Nicushkin, RW, Dallas ($8567 vs FLA): Nicushkin really turned heads during training camp and the preseason, and the No. 13 pick overall in the 2013 NHL Draft appears to be one of the early favorites for the Calder Trophy. He could start quickly against an inferior opponent on home ice.
Alex Pietrangelo, D, St. Louis ($8873 vs NSH): Pietrangelo is a jack-of-all-trades, who will give you points, plenty of shots on goal and at least two or three blocked shots per game. His plus-minus rating was weak last season, but the Blues should be better. Just don't expect a lot of bad behavior, as he had just 10 penalty minutes (PIM) in 47 games last season.
Tuukka Rask, G, Boston ($20311 vs TB): Based upon the information in the 'fun fact' area above, you have to like the Bruins at home in their opener. It will be the perfect storm, pun totally intended, with the Lightning paying a visit. Rask is a little pricey, but worth it.
Keith Yandle, D, Phoenix ($9214 vs NYR): I've always been a big fan of Yandle. He handles himself adequately at the defensive end, but is one of the most gifted offensive rearguards for Fantasy owners. Plus, he'll give you at least three or four shots on goal (SOG) per game while racking up penalty minutes and blocked shots as well.
Mats Zuccarello, LW, N.Y. Rangers ($6757 at PHO): Zuccarello had a real positive impact in just 15 games last season, going for eight points and a plus-10 rating. He'll also squeeze off plenty of shots, and he posted 15 blocked shots in those 15 games. He is a nice mid-level salary option.
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