This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Hockey series.
Saturday's all-day NHL slate begins at 1:00 PM Eastern time and features 12 games, many of which have important playoff implications. Whether they're veterans carrying their squads to the postseason or youngsters getting an extended look on teams with little to play for, certain players separate themselves from the pack as options to target in this slate while others are best avoided at their respective valuations. Read on to see who falls into which category.
Corey Crawford, CHI at LA ($29): While it will likely end up being for naught, Crawford has done everything he can to help Chicago make a late push for a playoff spot. He's 7-3-1 in his past 11 starts, with just 21 goals against over that stretch for a sub-2.00 GAA. Crawford will be looking to keep Chicago's postseason hopes alive against a Kings team that averages just 2.39 goals per game – only the Ducks score less.
GOALIE TO AVOID
Carey Price, MON at WPG ($32): Price has won only once in his past three starts, surrendering five goals in the last one. While he'll be incredibly motivated to bounce back with Montreal on the playoff bubble, doing so will be exceedingly difficult against a Jets team that's outscoring opponents 3.75 to 2.85 in the average game in Winnipeg.
Patrice Bergeron, BOS vs. FLA ($34): Bergeron brings a six-game point streak (six goals, six assists) into this one, and 50 of his 77 points through 61 appearances this season have come on home ice. The veteran pivot should continue his productive ways against a defensively challenged Panthers team that had been outscored 20-9 in dropping three consecutive games prior to Thursday's 5-2 win over the lowly Senators.
CENTER TO AVOID
Jack Eichel, BUF at NYI ($30): Eichel has been far from blameless in Buffalo's second-half slide, and he's been even worse of late. Over his past nine games, Eichel has just two goals, two assists and a minus-9 rating. Living up to his lofty $30 valuation will be difficult against the league-best Islanders defense (2.40 goals allowed per game).
William Nylander, TOR at OTT ($17): It took almost the whole season, but Nylander's finally looking like himself with the playoffs around the corner. He's underperformed after holding out for a contract but has come on over the last four games with four goals and 17 shots. Nylander gets a golden opportunity to keep rolling against a Senators team that's surrendering a league-high 3.66 goals per game.
Zack Kassian, EDM vs. ANH ($15): Kassian is currently getting his crack at one of the most coveted jobs in the NHL, filling out Edmonton's top line alongside Leon Draisaitl and Connor McDavid. Sharing the ice with two of the league's best players tends to lead to plenty of production, which is why Kassian has managed three goals and an assist over his last five games. Look for him to add to the recent success in this home matchup with a Ducks team that has a bottom-three goal differential and is finishing out a back-to-back set.
WINGS TO AVOID
Oliver Bjorkstrand, CLS at NSH ($19): Bjorkstrand has put his wicked wrister to good use with five goals in his last five games, but the recent success has skyrocketed his price to $19. Buying high is rarely a good strategy, especially when the opposing team ranks among the league's five stingiest defensively.
Patrik Laine, WPG vs. MON ($22): Laine's scoring touch has abandoned him recently. The normally prolific goal scorer has potted only one in his last 14 games, failing to put more than three pucks on net in any contest over that span. There are better options to be found among Winnipeg's forward ranks in this less-than-ideal matchup.
Ryan Pulock, NYI vs. BUF ($19): Pulock's three assists and seven shots led the charge Thursday as the Islanders broke out of their recent malaise with a statement 5-4 win over Winnipeg. The 2013 first-rounder with a rocket of a shot has bloomed into a nice all-around player with 36 points and a plus-18 rating. Meanwhile, the Sabres have been doing the opposite of blooming with the NHL's worst record since they won 10 straight games to climb to the top of the standings early in the season.
Quinn Hughes, VAN vs. DAL ($16): The matchup is far from ideal, but Hughes' talent makes him worth a look at just $16 in his second NHL game. He picked up a helper in his debut Thursday, showcasing the offensive skills that allowed him to rack up 62 points in 69 games at the collegiate level. The seventh pick in the 2018 draft and brother of top 2019 prospect Jack Hughes, Quinn's pedigree suggests he won't be this cheap much longer.
DEFENSEMEN TO AVOID
Brent Burns, SJ vs. VGK ($32): Burns has a minus-6 rating over San Jose's seven-game losing streak, and he's gone 14 games without a goal or multi-point performance. With Vegas' top-10 defense coming to town, this doesn't look like the time to use Burns.
Brett Pesce, CAR vs. PHI ($19): The bang for the buck isn't there on Pesce given the alternatives available on Carolina's blue line. Justin Faulk and Dougie Hamilton are both more established offensive producers, and they each average 6.1 fantasy points to Pesce's 5.8, yet cost $1 less than him.