This article is part of our DraftKings NBA series.
Friday's NBA slate features 11 games and begins at 7:00 PM Eastern time. There's plenty of depth across the board in this slate, but a couple of fast-paced inter-conference matchups stand out as spots to target for fantasy value.
Games to Target
Raptors (-2) at Pelicans O/U: 234
This game has the highest over/under in this slate, which is no surprise considering these teams combined for 252 points in Toronto's 130-122 win on Opening Night. New Orleans has been the league's worst defensive team overall, allowing 124.3 points per game.
Trail Blazers (-2.5) vs. Nets O/U: 233
This matchup comes up just behind Toronto-New Orleans in expected scoring. Both of these teams rank in the top-10 offensively and are also among the league's 10 most generous defenses, so this one should be played at a blistering pace.
Games to Fade
Magic (-6.5) vs. Grizzlies O/U: 207.5
The Magic have trouble scoring regardless of opponent but should also stifle the Grizzlies' inexperienced attack here, leading to some ugly and not fantasy-friendly basketball.
Lakers (-8.5) vs. Heat O/U: 215.5
This matchup is the only battle of top-10 defenses on this slate. Los Angeles's two superstars are outclassed by alternative options in their price range, while the Heat should be avoided altogether as heavy underdogs.
Center is especially rich in top-end talent, with point guard and power forward also not lacking in options. The shooting guard and small forward positions are the hardest to fill in this slate, though a number of appealing wing options in the low-mid price range can be used in tandem with more expensive point guards and centers to fill out a lineup.
Injury Situations to Monitor
D'Angelo Russell ($8,400) is expected to return after missing three games with a sprained right ankle, and he'll immediately slide in as the offensive focal point for the depleted Warriors. Draymond Green (finger) still isn't traveling with the team.
Ben Simmons ($7,600) is expected to sit out the 76ers' next three games due to a shoulder injury. Raul Neto ($3,400) logged 30 minutes against Utah after Simmons got hurt, and the affordable point guard should continue to get extra run.
Pascal Siakam ($8,800) should continue to serve as the focal point of Toronto's offense and is primed to dominate New Orleans' league-worst defense.
Andre Drummond ($10,500) stands out among this slate's star-studded center group. He's opened the season on a nine-game double-double streak, averaging 21.9 PPG and 18.6 RPG while rounding out his stat line with 3.1 APG, 1.7 steals and 2.2 blocks per game. Fellow Pistons' big man Blake Griffin (hamstring) will continue to sit out, freeing up plenty of room for Drummond against a Pacers' front court that might still be without Myles Turner (ankle).
Brandon Ingram ($8,100) is breaking out for New Orleans. Coming off his first career 40-point game, Ingram should be a popular pick against a Raptors team that's struggled to defend the small forward position.
Sticking in the Raptors-Hornets game, Fred VanVleet ($6,200) should be a popular pick after posting 56.25 fantasy points in the first meeting between these teams. VanVleet is eligible at either guard spot and playing a massive role this season by averaging over 37 minutes per game.
Andrew Wiggins ($7,100) remained a dominant scoring presence Wednesday in Karl-Anthony Towns' return from a two-game suspension, pouring in 30 points after averaging 23.0 while Towns was unavailable. The 28th-ranked Warriors defense at 121.5 points per game is unlikely to slow down the first overall selection from the 2014 Draft.
If Jeff Teague (illness - questionable) and Shabazz Napier (hamstring - doubtful) remain out, rookie sixth overall pick Jarrett Culver ($5,000) should be a popular pick alongside teammate Wiggins. Culver's eligible at shooting guard and small forward, but he filled in admirably at point guard with 15 points, five rebounds and seven assists last game.
Kristaps Porzingis ($7,600) will be motivated in his return to Madison Square Garden, and the 1-7 Knicks don't figure to offer much resistance, especially without Mitchell Robinson's (concussion) rim protection.
Bruce Brown ($5,600) has thrived as Detroit's starting point guard over the past three games with the rest of the team's depth chart at the position injured. He's averaged 15.0 PPG, 6.7 APG and 4.0 APG during that span while throwing in five steals and three blocks. He could pay off as an against-the-grain option against a Pacers' team that's contained the point guard position up to this point.
Buddy Hield ($6,700) has poured in 21-plus points in five of eight appearances this season, and the high-scoring wing should continue to thrive against a Hawks' team that's struggled to defend the shooting guard position.