This article is part of our DraftKings NBA series.
Today's article will focus on the six-game slate available at 7 PM ET, so the early games will be excluded.
The question of the day surrounds Chris Paul (hamstring). Will he be back? It's certainly possible, but I think the Rockets are going to be cautious with him. I think he's likely to be a rest candidate in back-to-backs for much of the second half of the season. As a result, I think you can still be bullish about James Harden ($13,700), but I've seen more and more winning lineups elect to fade the Beard.
Here's a list of the most pertinent injuries on the slate. All ongoing injuries are not listed.
Lonzo Ball (ankle) OUT, Kyle Kuzma (hip) QUESTIONABLE: Ball suffered the sprain on Saturday, and he'll miss at least a month. Kuzma's situation is a little hazy, and since this is the last game of the night against the Suns, we won't have much of an idea. You can expect a lot from Rajon Rondo ($6,200) in Ball's absence, but I still expect Josh Hart ($4,500) to see a lot of minutes in the backcourt. If Kuzma sits tonight, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope ($4,400) and Lance Stephenson ($4,100) should see more time, with Brandon Ingram ($6,200) absorbing a lot of production.
Jeff Teague (foot) OUT, Tyus Jones (ankle) OUT, Derrick Rose (ankle) QUESTIONABLE: Jerryd Bayless ($4,400) has performed well with this trio out. Even if Rose takes the floor, I expect decent value from Bayless, but Andrew Wiggins ($5,900) has also seen a bump in this game script.
DeAndre Ayton (ankle) QUESTIONABLE, Richaun Holmes (foot) QUESTIONABLE: We won't know about these players for while since it's the late game, but if you're able to do a late switch, Dragan Bender ($4,600) appears to be your safest pivot.
Emmanuel Mudiay (shoulder) OUT: With one game into this scenario it appears that Trey Burke ($3,900) has been the biggest beneficiary, but with coach Fizdale you can never tell from one game to the next. For that reason, I'm also endorsing Allonzo Trier ($5,100), who should have a more reliable floor.
Devin Booker, PHO at LAL ($8,300): With Phoenix's interior hurting, the Suns have to score somehow, and lately it's been all about Booker. The Lakers took a huge hit to their backcourt with the loss of Lonzo Ball, and if you add Kuzma's potential absence to the mix, Booker's prospects look a little bit brighter in this matchup. He's incurred some thin lines of late, but the cause of that can be attributed to his recent injury troubles. He should be a solid play tonight.
Justise Winslow, MIA at NY ($6,300): Winslow missed the last game against the Knicks, but the game sets up well for the current starter at point guard. While Josh Richardson ($6,700) is another decent candidate against the Knicks, Winslow is slightly cheaper and should be able to take advantage of the Emmanuel Mudiay injury.
Eric Gordon, HOU vs. ORL ($5,600): Before you poo-poo this pick, hear me out. Gordon starts, Paul enters with much fanfare, puts up a few points and leaves. Then we're back to Gordon, who will likely see the lion's share of garbage time. Paul's imminent return will drop Gordon's ownership into the single digits, which makes him a good contrarian option today.
LaMarcus Aldridge, SA vs. WAS ($8,400): I especially like this pick if DeRozan sits, but Aldridge is poised to have a field day against the undersized Wizards. Trevor Ariza is probably the best defensive frontcourt player they have, but there's little chance they'll pair him with Aldridge at a three-inch height disadvantage. That leaves the inexperienced Thomas Bryant, who will undoubtedly have his hands full.
Kenneth Faried, HOU vs., ORL ($5,900): Faried has been a superb addition to the team with the loss of Clint Capela, and his excellent stat lines are no longer a secret. I'm pretty confident that Faried will bite us with a course-correct anytime now, but Orlando ranks near the bottom of the league in grabbing their errant shots. I think Faried is a good double-double candidate as a result.
Josh Jackson, PHO at LAL ($5,500): With T.J. Warren (ankle) still out, Jackson has been performing admirably. I like this pick if Kyle Kuzma can't make it, as it will open up a few lanes for Jackson to attack. He saw 24 DKFP in only 27 minutes in his last game against the Lakers, so one should expect him to reach 30 DKFP or more in a starting role.
Karl-Anthony Towns ($10,500) vs. Rudy Gobert ($8,500): This is a rematch from a couple of days ago, and there's no question that Gobert got the best of Towns off the glass, but Towns scored almost twice as many points as Gobert. This is a really tough call to make, but despite Towns' potential, I'm more inclined to with Gobert due to the 2K discount. Overpaying for similar production is a no-no, so you have to hope Towns won't explode with 60 DKFP or more.
DeAndre Jordan, DAL vs. TOR ($7,100): Speaking of similar production, Howard had one of his better games this season against the Raptors with 18 points and 15 rebounds. Jordan's floor is reliable but a little costly at this price point, but the game history suggests that we could see Jordan's numbers pop in this matchup. Vegas seems to think this game will be close, so the idea of Jordan improves with the narrow spread.
Noah Vonleh, NY vs. MIA ($6,200): People will take one glance at game history and probably opt out of Vonleh, but this game occurred way back in October when the Knicks were just beginning to figure out their rotation. Vonleh sees 30 minutes regularly now, and while Hassan Whiteside will present a challenge, I think you'll get excellent value for the price here.
I saw way too much potential at other spots today, so Harden ended up being a fade in about 75% of my lineups.