NHL | Spotlight: Pittsburgh Penguins | 4/5/16

The Penguins travel to face the Ottawa Senators tonight, so quite a few goals are figured to be scored. It’s unusual for a team to lose one of its best players and actually play better without him. However, the Penguins have done just that since the loss of Malkin. Tonight, the Pens find themselves in a favorable matchup that is worth looking into.

Sidney Crosby (DK: $8,100 FD: $9,800) is a nice option any time the Penguins take the ice. His minutes and shots per game have gone up since the loss of Malkin. This could prove helpful tonight against a Senators team that allows the most shots per game in the NHL. Crosby is the star of both the first line and power play unit for the Penguins. Research suggests the power play to be a big factor in tonight’s game, as the Senators have trouble staying out of the penalty box.

With that being said, Nick Bonino (DK: $4,100 FD: $5,300) is also a solid play this evening. He orchestrates a power play unit of his own, the second, while also holding down the second line for the Penguins. He has arguably benefited the most from Malkin’s absence, earning the bump on both of his lines. He even fluctuates from first and second power play from time to time. Any time a lower priced player sees ice time with Crosby, it’s almost a sure fire value play. Bonino has seen his minutes and shots jump up since Malkin left as well. He has been taking advantage of the added opportunities.

Blue-liner Kris Letang (DK: $7,200 FD: $8,300) may be the best defender on tonight’s slate. Letang is pricey, but has both an ideal matchup and one of the best in the game feeding him. He plays on the first power play with Crosby and the Senators get penalized a great deal. Letang has been playing a lot more minutes lately (nearly 30), and has been firing at a clip of over four shots per game. He has tremendous upside and could be a differentiator for you tonight.

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