This article is part of our FanDuel NBA series.
With just four games on the NBA schedule Thursday night, it's not surprising to see a jam-packed slate to kick off the weekend. We have 10 games on the docket for Friday, with plenty of star power set to hit the hardwood. There'll be a ton of elite talent on display later in the evening, including LeBron James, Anthony Davis, Kawhi Leonard and Giannis Antetokounmpo.
It's now 2020, but here's your friendly 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 important to make each choice count.
Here are a few matchups to either target or avoid on Friday's 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 value plays.
San Antonio Spurs at Memphis Grizzlies (Projected Total: 233.5)
San Antonio has been racking up the points of late, coming off two straight games scoring over 120. The Spurs are led by DeMar DeRozan in the scoring department, who's averaging 21.9 points on the season. LaMarcus Aldridge has also been a key source of production, putting up just over 19 points per contest. Ja Morant figures to lead the charge for Memphis, averaging 17.8 points in his rookie season. Expect this game to include plenty of scoring, making it a contest to target when choosing Friday's lineup.
Charlotte Hornets at Utah Jazz (Projected Total: 212.5)
Devonte' Graham and the Hornets have put up 109-plus points in three of their last four matchups, but they're also averaging 104.6 on the season, 28th in the league. The Jazz boast a top-10 defense when it comes to points allowed per contest and they're not necessarily a force on the offensive end of the court, which is likely why this game isn't expected to light up the scoreboard. With nine other games on the schedule, this matchup is expected to be on the low end of the scoring spectrum.
There will be 20 teams in action Friday night, which should make it easy to differentiate your lineups. I'll take you through each position, highlighting the depth at each position along with a few value plays to target.
PG: We have two players listed at or above $10K at point guard - Luka Doncic and Trae Young. Doncic certainly faces the tougher matchup, while Young will take the court against an injury-plagued Washington squad. Ja Morant and De'Aaron Fox are in the mid-tier, both checking in at $7,400. Lonzo Ball and Dejounte Murray are a few potential value plays to scoop up in the backcourt.
SG: There's not at much elite talent at shooting guard, as Devin Booker highlights the position at $8,800. Zach LaVine and Jimmy Butler represent the other two players in the $8K range. If you're aiming low here, Evan Fournier ($5,800) and Lou Williams ($6,200) might be worth your time.
SF: The top three choices at small forward all carry injury designations into Friday, though all are expected to play. Giannis Antetokounmpo (back), LeBron James (illness) and Brandon Ingram (finger) are priced at $9,400 and above. Kelly Oubre Jr. is in the mid-tier here for $7,200, while Alec Burks and Troy Brown Jr. come in as a few solid value plays.
PF: Anthony Davis (back) is the only player with a price tag over $10K here, but he's questionable after taking a hard fall during Tuesday's game. Kawhi Leonard represents a safer choice, and he's also $1,400 cheaper against a young Golden State squad. Domantas Sabonis is also available for $9,100, though he's questionable with a knee injury. John Collins and Bam Adebayo are a pair of elite players in the $8K range, averaging just under 40 FanDuel points each per game.
C: Nikola Vucevic tops the list at center, while Rudy Gobert and Deandre Ayton are two other options for at least $8K. We see a sizeable dropoff after Ayton, as Jonas Valanciunas is the next best option for $6,500. Dwight Powell ($5,200) and Brook Lopez ($5,000) are a few value plays to consider.
Injury Situations to Monitor
Bradley Beal, WAS
Beal has missed the last four games but is questionable for Friday. Jordan McRae should draw another start if Beal can't go.
Brandon Ingram, NOR
Ingram suffered a right pinky sprain during Wednesday's matchup. And while he's not expected to miss any time, his status will be worth watching leading up to tip.
Marcus Morris, NY
Morris has missed two straight games with a sore neck and is questionable for Friday's tilt. Reggie Bullock has benefitted from his absence.
Derrick Jones Jr., MIA
Jones is questionable with a left thigh bruise. Justise Winslow could see more run if Jones is ruled out.
Garrett Temple, BRO
Temple will enter Friday with a questionable tag as a result of a knee injury. He figures to come off the bench if he is given the green light, though he's a candidate for around 30 minutes.
Malcolm Brogdon, IND
Brogdon is optimistic about a return Friday, though he's missed seven of the last eight games with back and hamstring injuries. It wouldn't be a shock to see him miss yet another contest.
Domantas Sabonis, IND
Sabonis has been deemed questionable for Friday's matchup with the Bulls due to left knee soreness. T.J. Warren could draw a start if Sabonis is sidelined.
Lauri Markkanen, CHI
Markkanen is probable Friday with an ankle injury. Expect him to gain clearance closer to tipoff, as he's yet to miss a game this season.
Aaron Gordon, ORL
Gordon is questionable as a result of right calf tightness. His availability figures to hinge on how he feels in morning shootaround and even pregame activities.
Marvin Williams, CHR
Williams could return from a brief two-game absence Friday following a procedure to repair his broken nose. He's officially questionable.
LeBron James, LAL
James is still battling illness, but the expectation is he'll be ready to roll Friday night.
Avery Bradley, LAL
Bradley is back on the injury report, although this time it's due to illness. The team will reevaluate the Texas product during morning shootaround.
Anthony Davis, LAL
Davis hit the deck hard in Tuesday's matchup, so he'll enter the day questionable with a gluteus maximus contusion.
Antetokounmpo was added to the injury report Thursday night, as his back is evidently still giving him some trouble. He's officially probable.
Ersan Ilyasova, MIL
Ilyasova was also added to the injury report Thursday as a result of right knee soreness. His availability will be cleared up closer to tip.
Marvin Bagley III, SAC
Bagley hasn't seen any game action since suffering a sprained left foot Dec. 26 against Minnesota, but he's been upgraded to questionable after making it through Thursday's practice. He may need to be eased back into action if he does get the green light.
D'Angelo Russell, GS
Russell has been on the shelf for the last five games with a bruised shoulder, but the Warriors are hopeful of a Friday return. The team is officially considering him questionable against the Clippers.
There are five players priced at $10K or above for Friday's slate, but as I've noted before, you'll need to be careful of the injury tags that three of these guys carry into the day. Luka Doncic, Antetokounmpo, Davis, James and Young are the five with hefty price tags.
Outside of this fantastic five, Brandon Ingram ($9,400), Kawhi Leonard and Domantas Sabonis ($9,100) fall into the elite category, though Ingram and Sabonis are both dealing with their own respective injuries. Unfortunately, it's just that time of the year. For healthier options, turn to Devin Booker, Nikola Vucevic and Rudy Gobert, who are a little cheaper to boot.
Friday's chalk plays are tricky, as four of the top six players currently carry an injury designation. With that said, Giannis, LeBron and AD are all candidates for high ownership, while Luka Doncic will also get a ton of attention as the most expensive player on this list.
There will be a few players in some new roles Friday evening due to injuries around the league. Let's turn our attention to Chicago for a moment, where Wendell Carter Jr. will be out of commission for the next month or so with a sprained ankle. In his absence. I'm expecting Daniel Gafford to take over the starting job at center. He'll likely receive higher ownership than usual if this turns out to be the case.
This isn't a new injury for the Mavericks, but Kristaps Porzingis has already been ruled out for Friday's matchup, meaning more chances for Dorian Finney-Smith and Delon Wright. Expect other DFS players to take note of the situation in Dallas.
Last but not least, Landry Shamet could be a chalky play Friday night, as Paul George was downgraded to out with a hamstring strain. Shamet represents the top candidate to join the starting lineup and averaged nine points, 3.3 boards and two dimes over his last three starts.
Dejounte Murray, SAN at MEM ($5,900):
Murray missed Thursday's matchup while attending to a personal matter, but he's played in San Antonio's last two contests and has been nothing but productive. He's put up 29 or more FanDuel points in four of his last five matchups, doing so by turning in solid all-around performances. Not only is Murray a scoring threat, but he's also capable of doing damage on the boards and by facilitating the basketball. With this matchup expected to involve plenty of scoring, his value only goes up Friday.
Jeremy Lamb, IND at CHI ($4,800):
Lamb was held in check by Miami on Wednesday, tallying 19.8 FanDuel points over 27 minutes of action. But I don't expect him to be kept down for long, especially given Indiana's injury picture. Both Malcolm Brogdon (back/hamstring) and Domantas Sabonis (knee) are questionable for Friday, meaning the Pacers could lean more heavily on Lamb in the scoring department if either player can't go. The former first-round pick out of Connecticut has racked up 25-plus FD points in four of his last five games, and he'll be a strong value play Friday night with high upside.