This article is part of our FanDuel NBA series.
After just two games Thursday night, we have 20 teams in action Friday evening with the action kicking off at 7:00 PM Eastern time. There will be plenty of elite players taking the court, setting the stage for an exciting start to the weekend. In a game with plenty of star power, the Rockets will take on the Clippers in Los Angeles to end the night, with that contest set to begin at 10:30 Eastern.
Here's a quick reminder that FanDuel has gone back to their old format, counting all nine of your player's scores within your lineup. With each selection counting towards your score, it'll be vital to make each and every choice count.
Let's get down to business.
Here are a few matchups to either target or avoid on this slate, based on FanDuel Sportsbook's projected scoring total. It can be beneficial to add players to your lineup who are expected to play in favorable scoring environments, especially if you're having a difficult time choosing between two players on this massive slate.
Charlotte Hornets at Washington Wizards (Projected Total: 232.5)
This matchup is expected to be a high-scoring affair, and it's not hard to see why. The Wizards rank second in the league in offensive rating at 114.0 and they lead the NBA with 119.7 points per game this season. Despite playing without John Wall (knee), Bradley Beal and Isaiah Thomas have been able to shoulder the offensive load and provide plenty of scoring for Washington. Charlotte checks in near the bottom when it comes to points per contest, but the scoring presence of Terry Rozier, Devonte' Graham and Miles Bridges should be plenty to push the point total towards the 230-plus range.
Boston Celtics at Denver Nuggets (Projected Total: 205.5)
The Celtics and the Nuggets are set to tip at 9:00 PM Eastern time, though this may be a game to avoid given the projected scoring total. The Nuggets are putting up just 106.8 points per game so far this season - which ranks them 23rd - and they've been held to 105 points or fewer in four of their last six matchups. Boston is in a similar situation, scoring 105 or less in each of their last four games. It may be best to take a look at the other nine games on the slate from a DFS perspective, especially if you're scrounging for value plays.
With 10 games on the docket for Friday night, there really aren't many weaknesses at any one position. We have five players priced at $10K or above and plenty of other elite players at $9K, providing many options for Friday's lineup.
However, the biggest dropoff of the slate occurs at small forward. LeBron James sits atop the list at $11,700, followed by Paul George ($8,600) and Tobias Harris ($7,200). After Harris, we drop down to Jaylen Brown at $6,700, making small forward the spot with the least amount of depth for star talent. On the flip side, there should be at least one or two solid value plays here, like Miles Bridges ($5,400) or Troy Brown ($3,900).
Injury Situations to Monitor
Cam Reddish, ATL
Reddish is questionable for Friday's tilt with a sprained left wrist. His availability should come into focus after morning shootaround.
Cory Joseph, SAC
Joseph has started each of the last four games for the Kings with De'Aaron Fox (ankle) out of commission, but he was added to the injury report Thursday and is questionable with a bruised heel.
Chandler Hutchison, CHI
Hutchison isn't expected to take the court Friday against Miami due to shin soreness. Assuming he's held out, Shaquille Harrison would likely draw the start at forward.
Derrick White, SAN
White is being considered a game-time call as a result of left foot soreness. If he's forced to miss his second consecutive contest, look for Patty Mills to see an extended run at guard.
Josh Richardson, PHI
Richardson missed Wednesday's clash against the Knicks while nursing a right hip injury, and his status remains in question for Friday. Furkan Korkmaz drew the start at shooting guard in Richardson's place Wednesday.
Anthony Davis, LAL
Davis continues to find his name on the injury report due to a nagging shoulder issue, though he's been able to play through the injury for the most part. He's averaging 21.7 points, 4.3 rebounds and 3.7 assists in his last three games and is expected to be cleared ahead of Friday's matchup.
Alex Caruso, LAL
Caruso is battling a minor calf strain, but the belief is that he'll be cleared to take the court against the Thunder. The former Aggie has provided a spark off the bench of late, tallying eight or more points in each of his last four games.
Seth Curry, DAL
Curry is questionable for Friday's matchup due to illness. If he's unable to go, Tim Hardaway could draw another start at shooting guard.
Draymond Green, GS
Green is in danger of missing a second straight game due to heel soreness. He's listed as questionable on Golden State's injury report.
Danuel House, HOU
House was initially listed as doubtful for Friday's game due to a left shoulder issue, but he was upgraded to questionable Thursday evening. How he fares in shootaround could determine his availability.
As previously mentioned, there are five players listed at $10K or above on Friday's slate: Luka Doncic, James Harden, LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Joel Embiid. However, there are also a few elite players up for grabs that may slip under the radar.
There are three players in the $9K range at point guard, including Trae Young, Ben Simmons and Russell Westbrook. With Doncic leading the pack, there's a good chance a few of these stars could go unnoticed. We have a similar situation at shooting guard, with Harden listed as the most desirable play for $11,500. If you decide to save a few bucks, Bradley Beal and Jimmy Butler are both averaging 44-plus FD points per contest this season and are nearly $2K cheaper.
Moving to small forward, Paul George is an underrated elite play after scoring over 40 FD points in three of his first four games this season. You can snag him for $8,600, saving $3K if you would rather avoid King James.
Rounding things out, Kawhi Leonard is priced just under $10K at power forward, followed by Bam Adebayo and Kristaps Porzingis in the $8K range. Andre Drummond, Clint Capela and Nikola Jokic are all available at center for $9,600 or less.
Unsurprisingly, the expected chalk from this slate will come from the stars and elite players mentioned in the section above, especially considering the number of stars in action Friday evening as part of this monster slate. With the way Luka Doncic has been playing of late, he'll certainly be heavily owned against a young Cleveland team despite his hefty price tag ($12,100). Doncic has finished with 68-plus FanDuel points in three of his last four games.
LeBron James and Anthony Davis (shoulder) will also be a heavily-owned duo Friday night, as the Lakers have emerged as one of the better teams in the league early in the 2019-20 campaign. James is coming off a triple-double Tuesday - also against the Thunder - while Davis poured in 34 points on the way to victory. The pair of stars will have a good chance for success Friday evening.
A few other chalky plays will likely depend on how the injury situation shakes out. Furkan Korkmaz could be a popular addition to many lineups if Josh Richardson can't go, and Shaquille Harrison figures to be heavily owned with Chandler Hutchison doubtful - Harrison put up 45.7 FD points in Wednesday's start against Detroit.
Langston Galloway, DET vs. ATL ($4,000):
Galloway is one game removed from a big performance, putting up 35.9 FanDuel points Nov. 15 against the Hornets. He's also set to face an Atlanta team that's allowing 58.7 FD points to opposing shooting guards this season, making this matchup all the more enticing. Galloway typically does his damage in the scoring column and has finished in double figures in each of his last 10 contests, though he's also shown that he can stuff the stat sheet. For the low price of $4,000, Galloway is certainly worth a look on Friday's slate - especially if you want to incorporate James Harden at the other shooting guard slot.
Nicolas Batum, CHA at WAS ($4,200):
Batum could be overlooked Friday night, as he's played in just three games this season after returning from a fractured finger. Despite this, he's logged 25 or more minutes in each of those contests, so it doesn't appear as though he's playing under any type of minutes restriction. While he's struggled to put up scoring numbers since his return, he's managed to stuff the stat sheet by averaging 6.7 rebounds and 4.7 assists over the last three matchups. Batum has averaged close to 10 PPG or more over the last 10 seasons, so it's only a matter of time until he kicks it into gear. He could be a nice choice to pair with a star such as LeBron James, Paul George or even Tobias Harris at small forward.