NHL.com identifies daily fantasy hockey players to watch in key statistical categories for DFS contests throughout the 2022-23 season. For more coverage, visit NHL.com/Fantasy and subscribe for free to the “NHL Fantasy on Ice” podcast.
MORE FANTASY COVERAGE:
Projected lineups, starting goalies
DFS PROJECTIONS: MON. 10/17
Player to watch for goal: Rickard Rakell, F, PIT (at MTL) — He scored a goal with three shots on goal in their win against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday, giving him 10 shots on goal in his first two games of the season. Rakell is skating on the top line at even strength with elite forwards Sidney Crosby (six points in two games; tied with Artemi Panarin of New York Rangers for most in NHL) and Jake Guentzel (four in two games), and Pittsburgh visits the Montreal Canadiens, who have been outscored 9-5 over their first three games.
Player to watch for assist: Anze Kopitar, F, LAK (at DET) — He’s tied for third in the NHL in assists (four) after having three assists, two on the power play, in a win against the Minnesota Wild on Saturday. Kopitar’s even-strength and power-play linemates, wings Kevin Fiala and Adrian Kempe, have combined to score four goals in three games. The Kings visit the Detroit Red Wings, who have allowed two goals in two games but also 34.0 shots on goal per game (tied for 10th most in NHL).
Player to watch for power-play point: Artturi Lehkonen, F, COL (at MIN) — The Colorado Avalanche wing has four power-play points in two games, tied for second in the NHL behind teammate Mikko Rantanen (five). Lehkonen is playing on the top line at even strength and also the first power play with elite skaters Nathan MacKinnon, Cale Makar and Rantanen. Minnesota is allowing the most goals per game in the NHL this season (7.0; 14 in two games).
Player to watch for shots on goal: Mika Zibanejad, F, NYR (vs. ANA) — The New York Rangers center is averaging five shots on goal per game (15 in three games) this season, including nine in their season-opening win against the Lightning. Zibanejad ranks 16th in the NHL in shots on goal over the past four seasons combined (613 in 197 games), and the Rangers host the Anaheim Ducks, who are allowing 43.0 shots on goal per game through their first two games of the season (second most in NHL behind Arizona Coyotes’ 48.0).
Goalie to watch for saves: Player will be added once more projected starters are available.
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