This article is part of our FanDuel NBA series.
With only four games on the docket for Tuesday, we'll have to be more diligent than ever when selecting our FanDuel lineups. The action will begin at 8:00 PM Eastern time with Portland at New Orleans and Golden State at Memphis, and we end the night on the west coast with the Thunder facing off against the Lakers, starting at 10:30 PM Eastern.
If you're new to FanDuel this season, here's a quick reminder that they've 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 vital to make each and every choice count, especially with this limited slate.
Let's get down to business.
Here are a few matchups to target on this slate, based on FanDuel Sportsbook 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 trouble picking between two players.
Golden State Warriors at Memphis Grizzlies (Projected Total: 222.0)
The Grizzlies run one of the fastest-paced offenses in the league, checking in at sixth, making them a favorite to rack up points Tuesday evening. They also have one of the best young talents in the league in Ja Morant, who's averaging 18.4 points, six assists and 3.3 rebounds over the first 12 matchups of his NBA career. Meanwhile, the Warriors have dealt with a pile of injuries already this season, though they've managed to put up 100-plus points in 11 of the 14 games they've played this year. Golden State's young team has also had its share of defensive struggles (last in defensive rating), making this an enticing DFS environment.
Phoenix Suns at Sacramento Kings (Projected Total: 220.5)
Phoenix has been one of the top teams in the league when it comes to scoring this season, averaging 117.6 points per game (ranked fourth). They also like to run and gun, checking in at ninth when it comes to pace. Both of these stats make this contest a prime stomping ground for DFS production. On the other side, Sacramento will be without their star point guard in De'Aaron Fox (ankle), but they'll still have plenty of firepower in the form of Buddy Hield and Harrison Barnes. Hield is coming off a stellar 35-point performance Sunday against the Celtics and will be primed for another big night Tuesday.
Considering we have only four games on the schedule Tuesday, both point guard and shooting guard are relatively deep. At the point, Damian Lillard is the top choice at $9,800, followed by Ja Morant ($8,400). Shooting guard begins with Jrue Holiday ($9,000), with Devin Booker ($8,800) and Buddy Hield ($7,900) following.
Moving to small forward, LeBron James is unsurprisingly the highest-priced player of the night, checking in at $12,000. Brandon Ingram (knee) is second on the list at $8,700, but then we see a large dropoff. Kelly Oubre sits behind Ingram at $6,700, a $2K dip. Harrison Barnes and Danilo Gallinari are the only other two small forwards priced in the $6K range.
Power forward is a bit deeper, as we have five players valued at $7K or above. Anthony Davis is the top choice at this position for $11,200. Rounding things off at center is Hassan Whiteside ($8,200), who is followed by Jonas Valanciunas ($7,800). They're the only two players who can be snagged for $7K or more, making this position an obvious weak spot within this slate.
Injury Situations to Monitor
Carmelo Anthony, POR
Anthony hasn't taken the court since signing a contract with Portland on Thursday night, but he could make his team debut Tuesday. The Trail Blazers should release an update on his availability closer to tip.
Lonzo Ball, NOR
Ball is listed as questionable due to a strained right adductor. He's missed the last five contests due to the injury. Also of note, Frank Jackson (neck) is questionable, meaning Nickeil Alexander-Walker and E'Twaun Moore could see extended minutes if neither player is cleared.
Brandon Ingram, NOR
Ingram is questionable for Tuesday's matchup with Portland due to a right knee issue. He'll need to make it through shootaround to be cleared for action.
Ricky Rubio, PHO
Rubio was a late scratch from Monday's game against the Timberwolves due to back spasms, so his status for Tuesday is up in the air at this point.
Trevor Ariza, SAC
Ariza is being considered probable for Tuesday's clash due to a groin injury. He's yet to draw a start this season, but he could offer up some value with Marvin Bagley (finger) out of commission.
Anthony Davis, LAL
Davis finds himself on the injury report yet again due to a shoulder issue. He's been able to play through the injury for the last two games, but it'll be worth checking in on his status prior to tipoff.
There are fewer elite players on the board Tuesday night given the light slate, as LeBron James and Anthony Davis are the only two valued at $10K or above. There are also two options in the $9K range – Damian Lillard at point guard and Jrue Holiday at shooting guard. With limited options in play, it may be a solid strategy to pay up at the particularly scarce positions (small forward or power forward).
Aside from the cream of the crop, there are a handful of players who can be considered potentially elite in the $8K range: Ja Morant, Devin Booker, Brandon Ingram (knee) and Hassan Whiteside have all proven themselves as capable of big performances.
As per usual, the expected chalk from this slate will come from the stars and elite players mentioned in the section above. With a lack of depth at small forward and power forward, it wouldn't be shocking to see James and Davis heavily owned against a struggling Oklahoma City squad. You can also anticipate Lillard to be a popular play against a banged-up Pelicans' team.
Outside of the elite plays, look for Nickeil Alexander-Walker and E'Twaun Moore to be chalky plays based on the injuries to Lonzo Ball and Frank Jackson. Jevon Carter could also be in popular demand depending on the status of Ricky Rubio (back) for Tuesday's clash.
Rajon Rondo, LAL vs. OKC ($4,400)
Rondo is still easing his way back into action after recovering from a calf injury earlier in the season, but he took a big step forward Sunday against the Hawks, putting up 15 points off the bench (5-9 FG, 2-3 3Pt, 3-3 FT) in 24 minutes of action, a season high. It remains to be seen when he might return to a starting role, but as long as Rondo continues to produce in a similar manner off the bench, he'll be a steal for just over $4K, especially considering his ability to facilitate the offense. He'll face an Oklahoma City defense surrendering 48.0 FanDuel points per contest to opposing point guards through the first month of the 2019-20 campaign.
Glenn Robinson, GS at MEM ($4,900)
Robinson has been given nearly unlimited opportunities on a team that's battled several key injuries, and he's stepped up accordingly. He's averaging 31.1 minutes to go along with 10.6 points and 5.5 rebounds over 14 games this season, all starts. Robinson has also shown that he's capable of big performances, registering 30-plus FanDuel points in two of those 14 matchups. The former second-round pick out of Michigan is an enticing selection against a Memphis team that gave up 131 points in its last game Sunday against the Nuggets.
Nicolo Melli, NOR vs POR ($4,400)
I like the value here with Melli, especially considering he's been thrust back into the Pelicans' rotation given the team's massive injury report. Jahlil Okafor (ankle), Brandon Ingram (knee), Lonzo Ball (hip) and Frank Jackson (neck) could all miss Tuesday's matchup, which would once again open up more opportunities for Melli. He's scored 28.5 and 25.5 FD points in his last two contests, respectively, putting up at least 10 points, five rebounds and three assists in each of those matchups. Jaxson Hayes will also be a solid value play at center, priced at $4,800. He drew the start in his team's last game, finishing with 10 points and 10 rebounds in a season-high 32 minutes.