This article is part of our FanDuel NBA series.
We have a fairly extensive slate for a Tuesday night, as there are eight games on tap. There should be a number of competitive matchups, considering there are some divisional clashes in Bulls-Pacers and 76ers-Celtics, as well a Trail Blazers-Clippers showdown that caps off the night. The injury report remains extensive – not uncommon for this time of season – but there are an inordinate number of notable names among the walking wounded that are in danger of sitting out.
Here's a closer look at the three games with the highest projected totals:
Portland Trail Blazers at Los Angeles Clippers (Projected total: 227.0 points)
These two teams combined for 233 points the first time they met this season, and the Trail Blazers check in allowing 115.1 points per road game, along with 48.1 percent shooting when traveling. The Clippers are scoring 115.5 points per home contest as well, but they're one of the league's best defensive teams with just 108.1 points per home game surrendered. Therefore, the best chance of maximizing DFS production may come from selection some of the top Clippers options, but Damian Lillard also has a good positional matchup on paper versus Los Angeles' sometimes porous backcourt defense.
Philadelphia 76ers at Boston Celtics (Projected total: 222.5 points)
The 76ers will have Joel Embiid back from a rest day, and he's already trampled the Celtics twice this season. Philadelphia has scored 117 and 122 points in its first two games against Boston, but both the Celtics (108.2 PPG allowed at home) and 76ers (108.1 PPG allowed on road) have been very good defensively in the splits that apply to them Tuesday. Nevertheless, with how well each team knows the other, there could be a combined score in the neighborhood of the 226 and 232 points the first two games produced.
Milwaukee Bucks at Golden State Warriors (Projected total: OTB as of early Tuesday)
The total for this game should be in the mid-220s at minimum once it's released, with Milwaukee averaging 119.3 points per road game and Golden State putting up 115.2 per home contest. The Bucks surrender a robust 115.1 points per game when traveling, and the Warriors are yielding 111.4 per game on their Chase Center home floor. With each team's stars expected to suit up and both clubs playing at a top-10 pace, this should be one of the highest scoring games of the night.
Injury Situations to Monitor
NOTE: Injury reporting is especially fluid in the NBA, where the status of multiple players can change during the course of a day. Therefore, although the following serves as a foundation for the latest injury report as of the time the article is written, check back throughout the course of the day with RotoWire for the latest news regarding the status of all players on that night's slate.
Giannis Antetokounmpo, MIL (knee)/ Status: PROBABLE
Antetokounmpo carries a probable designation after sitting out Saturday's game.
LeBron James, LAL (ankle)/ Status: OUT
Clint Capela, ATL (hand)/ Status: PROBABLE
Capela is expected to play through his right hand soreness.
Zion Williamson, NOP (thumb)/ Status: QUESTIONABLE
If Williamson misses a fourth straight game, either Jaxson Hayes or James Johnson would draw a start at power forward, while the remaining healthy members of the starting five would see elevated usage.
Domantas Sabonis, IND (ankle)/ Status: QUESTIONABLE
If Sabonis were to sit out a second straight game, Doug McDermott is likely to see another start at power forward, while the remaining members of the Pacers starting five should all enjoy elevated usage to a degree.
Brandon Ingram, NOP (toe)/ Status: QUESTIONABLE
If Ingram misses a fourth straight game, James Johnson is likely to log another start at small forward.
John Collins, ATL (ankle)/ Status: OUT
Fred VanVleet, TOR (hip)/ Status: GTD
Malcolm Brogdon, IND (hip)/ Status: QUESTIONABLE
If Brogdon, who was able to practice Monday, nevertheless misses a third straight game Tuesday, Edmond Sumner is likely to have another run with the starting five.
Steven Adams, NOP (concussion)/ Status: GTD
Andre Drummond, LAL (toe)/ Status: QUESTIONABLE
If Drummond is forced to sit out again, Marc Gasol would continue in the starting lineup at center.
Other notable injuries:
Nickeil Alexander-Walker, NOP (ankle)/ Status: OUT
Kyle Lowry, TOR (foot)/ Status: OUT
Brandon Clarke, MEM (calf)/ Status: QUESTIONABLE
Jusuf Nurkic, POR (knee)/ Status: OUT
Serge Ibaka, LAC (back)/ Status: OUT
De'Anthony Melton, MEM (leg)/ Status: OUT
Coby White, CHI (neck)/ Status: PROBABLE
Daniel Theis, CHI (personal)/ Status: OUT
DeMarcus Cousins, LAC (health and safety protocols)/ Status: GTD
Derrick Jones, POR (quadriceps)/ Status: GTD
Tristan Thompson, BOS (COVID-19 protocols)/ Status: OUT
Jeremy Lamb, IND (toe)/ Status: QUESTIONABLE
De'Andre Hunter, ATL (knee)/ Status: OUT
Cam Reddish, ATL (Achilles)/ Status: OUT
Rodney Hood, TOR (hip)/ Status: OUT
Josh Hart, NOP (thumb)/ Status: OUT
Justise Winslow, MEM (quadriceps)/ Status OUT
Patrick Beverley, LAC (knee)/ Status: GTD
Antetokounmpo is fully expected to play after sitting out Saturday's game to rest his knee, and he'll have a premium matchup versus a fast-paced Warriors squad that's also had trouble defending power forwards. Embiid is also expected to return after resting his knee on the second game of a back-to-back set Sunday. He also has an excellent matchup against a Celtics team he's tabulated 62.0 and 53.7 FD points against this season. Jokic will also be set up to succeed versus a Pistons team that's been vulnerable to centers all season and that will be on the second game of a back-to-back set.
There are also several players with salaries in the high four figures that have the ability to deliver elite scores, including Clint Capela ($9,900), Zion Williamson ($9,700), Kawhi Leonard ($(9,500), Stephen Curry ($9,500) and Damian Lillard ($9,200). Capela has seen a big salary bump from Sunday, but it's well deserved after posting 48 to 63.4 FD points in his last three games. The big man should continue to see even more volume than usual with John Collins still out. Williamson's thumb injury will have to be monitored throughout the day, while Leonard and Lillard will be locked into what should be a very competitive game environment against one another. Curry has a tough positional matchup against the Bucks' Jrue Holiday, and it's worth noting he managed a relatively modest 33.8 FD points against Milwaukee on Christmas Day, although that came in a blowout scenario.
Other likely chalk plays include Lonzo Ball and Eric Bledsoe if Adams, Ingram and Williamson are out for the Pelicans; Trae Young and Bogdan Bogdanovic with Collins still out; Malachi Flynn and DeAndre' Bembry if VanVleet joins Kyle Lowry on the sidelines; and the likes of Caris LeVert and Myles Turner if Sabonis is ruled out, with Malcolm Brogdon joining them if he's able to suit up.
Myles Turner, IND vs. CHI ($6,200)
Turner has already touched up the Bulls for 33.5 and 41.2 FD points in his first two games against them, and although the matchup is tougher with Nikola Vucevic now patrolling the post for Chicago, Turner still has a good chance to deliver a solid return on his reasonable salary. The veteran has already delivered over 5x return on his current figure in 27 of 45 games, and there's also a chance he once again takes the floor without frontcourt mate Domantas Sabonis. Turner is averaging 48.3 FD points per 36 minutes without his fellow big man, and despite Vucevic's presence, the Bulls are still surrendering the 11th-most FD points per game (41.7) to centers over the last five games.
Will Barton, DEN vs. DET ($5,500)
Barton's salary remains surprisingly modest for a player who's scored over 30 FD points in his last two games and has averaged a solid 28.7 over his 13 second-half games. Barton is taking 12.8 shots per contest over that span, a solid level of usage that could lead to a strong fantasy night if it persists against a Pistons team surrendering 40.0 FD points per game to players with shooting guard designations for the season, including 41.3 per contest over the last five. Detroit also ranks in the bottom 10 in three-point shooting percentage allowed (37.6), while Barton currently boasts an identical and career-high 37.6 percent success rate from distance (4.6 three-point attempts per contest).
Terance Mann, LAC vs. POR ($5,100)
Mann is averaging 25.1 FD points per game over the last nine contests, a stretch during which he's provided averages of 13.9 points (on 52.0 percent shooting, including 38.9 percent from three-point range), 6.6 rebounds and 2.4 assists across 27.6 minutes. Just as important, the second-year guard's playing time has been steady, with Mann seeing between 23 and 34 minutes in all but one contest during that span, despite drawing only one start. He should be set for another solid workload Tuesday against a Trail Blazers team allowing the second-highest offensive efficiency (45.9) to second-unit players, as well as the 11th-most FD points per game (39.9) to two-guards and second-highest shooting percentage (46.0) to the position.