This article is part of our FanDuel NBA series.
Following a nine-game slate Monday, the NBA schedule slows down a bit Tuesday, as we see just five games on the docket. We'll get things started with the Clippers taking on the 76ers and the Bulls traveling to Washington to battle the Wizards at 7:00 PM Eastern time. The final matchup of the evening features the Celtics and the Rockets, with tipoff scheduled for 9:30 Eastern time.
Here's another friendly reminder that FanDuel has gone back to the 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.
Despite a smaller slate, there's expected to be plenty of scoring Tuesday evening. 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. Here are a couple games that are expected to rack up the points:
Boston Celtics at Houston Rockets (Projected Scoring Total: 230.5):
It's never a shock to see that Houston is expected to be involved in a high-scoring affair, as they're second in the NBA in points per contest (118.2). James Harden is averaging 35.2 points over 50 games this season and figures to be in the spotlight Tuesday night, as per usual. The Celtics are in the top half of the league when it comes to points scored, averaging 112.7 points per contest so far this season. Look for Kemba Walker (22.0 PPG) to shoulder his fair share of the scoring load in this one.
If you're looking for another game to target, I'd take a hard look at Chicago vs. Washington (projected total: 230.0). The Wizards have one of the worst scoring defenses in the league and are fifth in scoring with 115.5 points per contest, which is a recipe for points.
With only 10 teams suiting up Tuesday night it'll be slightly more difficult to differentiate your FanDuel lineups, but there's still plenty of talent at each position to win you some cash. I'll take you through the top choices at the five positions, and I'll also throw in a few mid-tier and value plays below, as well as a bit of strategy.
PG: Russell Westbrook and Damian Lillard are the top two options here – I'd lean towards Lillard if you plan on bagging an elite point guard. I like either of these two ball handlers paired with someone like Dejounte Murray or Landry Shamet, who are further down on the list. Kemba Walker and Chris Paul are viable mid-tier guards.
SG: James Harden stands out at shooting guard, though you can save some cash by electing to roll with Bradley Beal against a weak Chicago squad. Dennis Schroder and C.J. McCollum stand out as mid-tier talent, while Josh Hart and Marcus Smart are available to be scooped up as value plays. Considering there are fewer elite options in the frontcourt, I'd pay up at the two guard slots and seek value at the remaining three positions.
SF: The top dog at small forward is Paul George, followed by Brandon Ingram (ankle). With only a few clear studs up for grabs, I'll turn my attention to guys like Danilo Gallinari and Carmelo Anthony, who offer up a lot of bang for their buck. It wouldn't be a bad move to roll with a pair of lower-priced players at small forward, as it'll provide more opportunities to differentiate your lineups.
PF: Kawhi Leonard is your man if you need an All-Star at power forward, followed by Jayson Tatum and Zion Williamson. I like Robert Covington's matchup with his new team, and I'm also encouraged that he logged 34 minutes Sunday against the Jazz. Derrick Favors and Al Horford also catch my eye as value plays.
C: The hope at center is that you've saved enough cash for one of the top two choices, either Joel Embiid or Hassan Whiteside. However, if this isn't the case, there are a handful of lower-priced options that can get the job done. Steven Adams and Ivica Zubac are two of the more reliable options in this range, while Ian Mahinmi is a riskier play but also has a lower price tag.
Injury Situations to Monitor
Tomas Satoransky, CHI
Satoransky is probable due to an ankle injury.
Zach LaVine, CHI
LaVine is probable due to neck spasms and a knee contusion.
Ryan Arcidiacono, CHI
Arcidiacono is probable due to right elbow discomfort.
Anfernee Simons, POR
Simons is probable for Tuesday's matchup with the Pelicans due to a concussion.
Brandon Ingram, NOR
Ingram is questionable due to an ankle sprain. He was held out of Monday's practice.
Jaylen Brown, BOS
Brown is probable against the Rockets due to a right ankle sprain.
We see just two players on Tuesday's slate priced above the $10K range and they just happen to make up Houston's backcourt – James Harden ($11,300) and Russell Westbrook ($10,100). Harden is averaging 57.3 FanDuel points per game and Westbrook is putting up 48.9 FD points so far this season.
We also have a ton of talent just outside of the $10K duo, including Damian Lillard ($9,800), Joel Embiid ($9,800), Bradley Beal ($9,800) and Kawhi Leonard ($9,200) to name a few. Ben Simmons ($9,100) and Zach LaVine ($9,100) round out the players in the $9K range. If you're looking for elite plays that I find to have low price tags, Paul George ($8,400), Chris Paul ($7,400) and Jrue Holiday ($7,400) are all players to look at.
James Harden figures to once again enter the conversation as one of the chalkier plays of the night, and rightfully so. I'm also obligated to include Damian Lillard in this section, who's coming off of back-to-back 50-plus FD-point performances. Since we're looking at hot hands, Joel Embiid is another name to bring up – he finished with 66.9 FanDuel points Sunday against the Bulls.
As we make our way into the mid-tier range, I'm looking at Kemba Walker and Zion Williamson as players who will be highly sought after. While the buzz surrounding Zion has appeared to fade, he's been far from disappointing, scoring 30-plus FD points in each of his last four contests.
Lonzo Ball, NO vs POR ($6,700)
Ball isn't your typical value play for just under $7K, but his value is off the charts here. He's set to face a Portland squad that surrenders 45.8 FD points per game to opposing point guards, which is third worst in the NBA behind the Nets and the Cavs. It's also worth pointing out that Ball has been playing like his hair's on fire of late, finishing with 30-plus FanDuel points in each of his last seven games. Over that stretch, he's notched a pair of 40 FD-point performances. It's a good idea to have Ball on your radar.
Lou Williams, LAC at PHI ($5,700)
Williams has been showing off his scoring prowess in recent weeks, averaging 19.9 points to go with 5.2 assists and 3.3 boards in the new calendar year (18 games). I also like that he's seen solid playing time over that stretch, logging just a touch under 30 minutes despite making just three starts since Jan. 1. I expect Williams to be overlooked at shooting guard.