This article is part of our FanDuel NHL series.
Sunday's NHL main slate has an unusual 6:00 PM Eastern start time and features five of the day's nine games. Below, you'll find an overview of the matchups and suggested options for crafting an effective lineup.
The two obvious teams to target are the Stars (in Ottawa) and Blue Jackets (in New Jersey), but the other three games should also feature some scoring, as they include three of the league's top 11 offenses (Toronto, St. Louis and Nashville). The latter two teams will face off head-to-head for the second time in as many days.
Anton Khudobin ($8,400) should get the nod for the Stars in Ottawa after Ben Bishop started Saturday in Montreal. The veteran Russian has been among the league's best backups, as he has a 14-7-1 record, 2.26 GAA and .914 save percentage, including wins in each of his last three starts.
The high-priced alternative to Khudobin is Columbus' Elvis Merzlikins ($8,500). Elvis has gone 0-2-1 in his last three starts following an eight-game winning streak, but he still has a tidy 2.18 GAA and .930 save percentage. He gets a great opportunity to right the ship against the bottom-10 Devils offense (2.72 goals per game).
Connor Hellebuyck ($7,500) is an intriguing low-cost play, but his value will depend on which Blackhawks team shows up to Winnipeg. Will it be the one that scored eight goals Saturday in Calgary or the one that scored eight goals without a win in the previous five games combined? As for Hellebuyck, he has split his past six decisions while holding four of those opponents to two goals apiece.
MacKenzie Blackwood ($7,300) has some against-the-grain appeal against the slumping Blue Jackets, who are winless in their last four games and rely on defense to win. Blackwood has turned aside 108 of 109 shots during an active three-game winning streak, so he would provide massive value at just $7,300 if recent trends hold.
Pierre-Luc Dubois ($5,500) is a nice value option against a Devils team that's still giving up the second-most goals per game (3.42) despite Blackwood's recent heroics. The center leads Columbus with 43 points in 59 games, and he's just two goals shy of Oliver Bjorkstrand's team-high 19.
David Perron ($6,300) leads the Blues with 23 goals and 56 points in 58 games, and the veteran winger should continue to produce against a Predators team that's allowing 3.21 goals per game — seventh-most in the league.
Patrik Laine ($8,000) is as hot as any sniper in the league right now. He's been blanked in consecutive games following a stretch of nine goals in nine games, but Laine has been firing at will with seven shots in each of these last two contests. With a career-low 12.1 shooting percentage, Laine could still be due to climb closer to his career mark of 15.1 percent. A Blackhawks team that's playing its second game in as many nights will have a hard time slowing him down.
After missing six weeks due to a lower-body injury, Victor Olofsson ($6,300) returned in style Thursday with a two-goal performance. The Swedish winger now has an 18-19-37 line in 43 games and will have a nice opportunity to add to it against a fast-paced Toronto team that's giving up 3.22 goals per game.
FORWARD LINE STACKS
Stars at Senators
This favorable matchup in Ottawa is even more appealing when you consider that the Senators will likely be starting Craig Anderson (3.21 GAA, .901 save percentage) in net for this second leg of a back-to-back. Seguin leads the Stars with 44 points in 58 games, while none of his teammates have more than 31. Hintz is one shy of Jamie Benn's team-leading goal total, as the sophomore forward has 17 tallies despite missing nine games. The affordable Perry is far from his prime self, but perhaps a promotion to the top line while the team battles injuries up front will help ignite a hot streak.
Maple Leafs at Sabres
Toronto sports the top offense in this slate at 3.53 goals per game, and those who don't pay up for this top line will be hard-pressed to make up the difference elsewhere if this trio plays up to its potential. Matthews is tied for the league lead with 42 goals in 59 games, and he's 10th with 71 points. Marner has missed 11 of the team's 59 games, yet he still ranks second on the Maple Leafs with 59 points. Hyman has been limited to just 40 appearances but has still mustered a 17-15-32 line.
Predators vs. Blues
This line was unstoppable when these teams met Saturday in St. Louis, as Turris had a goal and two assists, Duchene had a goal and an assist, and Forsberg chipped in a helper. A repeat performance could be on tap in the rematch in Nashville, with a strong possibility of a better performance from Forsberg, who leads the team with 18 goals.
Zach Werenski ($6,200) has as many goals as Dubois, even though the blueliner has missed seven of the Blue Jackets' 59 games. The high-scoring defenseman has tremendous upside in New Jersey.
Rasmus Dahlin ($5,600) is starting to live up to his billing as the first overall selection from the 2018 draft. The Sabres defenseman has 13 points in his last 14 games, and he should add to that total in what's expected to be a high-scoring affair against Toronto.
Another hot defenseman is Winnipeg's Neal Pionk ($4,800). He has five points in his last four games and 22 points in the last 27. The 24-year-old blueliner will likely see his price climb before long if he keeps this level up.