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FanDuel Lineup Plays and Strategy for Friday, January 6

Injury Situations to Monitor

Giannis Antetokounmpo, MIL (knee): PROBABLE

Antetokounmpo is fully expected to play through his lingering knee soreness and fill his usual high-usage role in a highly favorable matchup versus the Hornets.

Joel Embiid, PHI (foot): OUT

Embiid's second straight absence could lead to P.J. Tucker remaining at center and Tyrese Maxey getting another turn with the first unit.

LeBron James, LAL (ankle): PROBABLE

James is expected to return from missing one game and face a Hawks team he went over 70 FD points against in his previous meeting.

Bradley Beal, WAS (hamstring): OUT

Beal's absence will likely lead to Corey Kispert remaining in the starting five and especially elevated usage for Kristaps Porzingis.

Donovan Mitchell, CLE (rest): OUT

In Mitchell's absence, Darius Garland (thumb) should have a significant role if he can go, and the likes of Evan Mobley and Jarrett Allen should see bumps in usage. Caris LeVert should also enter the starting five in place of Mitchell.

Darius Garland, CLE (thumb): QUESTIONABLE

If Garland can't suit up, Raul Neto could draw a start at point guard.

Jerami Grant, POR (quadriceps): QUESTIONABLE

If Grant is sidelined, Trendon Watford may start at power forward.

Other notable injuries:

Zion Williamson, NOP (hamstring): OUT

Anthony Davis, LAL (foot): OUT

Devin Booker, PHO (groin): OUT

Karl-Anthony Towns, MIN (calf): OUT

Kelly Oubre, CHA (hand): OUT

Brandon Ingram, NOP (toe): OUT

RJ Barrett, NYK (finger): OUT

Clint Capela, ATL (calf): OUT

Jrue Holiday, NOP (illness): PROBABLE

Russell Westbrook, LAL (foot): PROBABLE

Jusuf Nurkic, POR (illness): PROBABLE

Elite Players

We have seven players with five-figure salaries that have a chance to play on Friday's slate – Giannis Antetokounmpo ($12,000), Nikola Jokic ($11,300), LeBron James ($11,200), Kevin Durant ($10,600), James Harden ($10,200), Julius Randle ($10,100) and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander ($10,000).

Antetokounmpo has exceeded 70 FD points in three of his last four games and 61.2 in the other outing during that sample. He also draws a premium matchup against a porous Hornets frontcourt.

Jokic just saw his 12-game streak of 50-plus FD-point tallies narrowly snapped against the Timberwolves, but he still scored 46.9 across 33 minutes in that game and then posted 33 in only 24 minutes against the Clippers on Thursday.

James is ready to return after a one-game absence, and he produced 70.5 and 65.2 FD points in the two games immediately prior, with the first tally coming against the same Hawks squad he'll face again Friday.

Durant has recorded between 55.1 to 62.3 FD points in three of his last four games and will now face a Pelicans squad that's ill-equipped to defend him without Zion Williamson (hamstring) available down low.

Harden has dropped 49.4 and 50.2 FD points in his last two appearances and has also eclipsed 60 on three other occasions over the last six games.

Randle has topped 54 FD points in seven straight games, a stretch where he's gone over 60 three times.

SGA returned from a one-game absence to score 46.8 FD points across 35 minutes against the Magic on Wednesday and has exceeded 60 and 70 FD points once apiece in his last five games.

Expected Chalk

Tyrese Haliburton, IND ($9,700)

Haliburton has scored over 49 FD points in three of the last four and is averaging 44.6 FD points per game for the season, which should keep him very popular.

LaMelo Ball, CHA ($9,600)

Ball is also averaging 44.6 FD points on the season and has scored 47.8 to 58.5 FD points in his last four games, numbers that should help him get into plenty of lineups.

Trae Young, ATL ($9,500)

Young only managed 28 FD points in 31 minutes versus the Kings on Wednesday, but he shot just under 60 percent and has also eclipsed 50 FD points in three of the last seven.

Kristaps Porzingis, WAS ($9,300)

Porzingis will take the floor without Bradley Beal (hamstring), a scenario in which he sports a 29.8 percent usage rate and averages 48.4 FD points per 36 minutes.

Bam Adebayo, MIA ($9,100)

Adebayo has produced between 47.4 to 63.1 FD points in five straight games and has back-to-back double-doubles, which should keep him in plenty of lineups in a marquee matchup against the Suns.

Key Values

Brook Lopez, MIL vs. CHA ($6,700)

Lopez has gone off for 59.9 and 38.8 FD points in his last two games, a stretch during which he's complemented his scoring and rebounding production with an average of four blocks per contest. The big man now draws a premium matchup versus the Hornets, which allowed him to rack up 40.7 FD points in 32 minutes back on Dec. 3 and have surrendered an NBA-high offensive efficiency rating to centers (35.8). Charlotte has also yielded an NBA-high 60.8 FD points per contest to fives and, particularly relevant in Lopez's case, an NBA-high 6.4 blocks per game.

John Collins, ATL at LAL ($6,500)

Collins has registered 49.1 and 49.9 FD points in his last two contests, logging at least 40 minutes and generating a double-double in each of those games while shooting a blistering a 57.1 percent. He's also averaging 37.6 FD points over his last six games overall, with the one disappointing performance during that stretch coming against the Lakers. However, that game -- in which he only posted 15.8 FD points in 23 minutes -- saw Collins foul out. L.A. is still a good team to target, considering the club has allowed the ninth-highest offensive efficiency rating to power forwards (27.4), along with the fourth-most FD points per game to the position (47.0).

Thomas Bryant, LAL vs. ATL ($6,300)

Bryant makes for an excellent play on the other side of the Lakers-Hawks clash and checks in averaging 31 FD points per game over his last 11 outings. Ten of those have come as a starter in place of Anthony Davis (foot), and his highest tally during that span, 45.9 FD points, came against Atlanta. The Hawks will still be missing Clint Capela (calf) on Friday, and they are surrendering the third-most FD points per game to centers in the last seven (59.5), six which Capela has missed. The Hawks have also conceded the fifth-most blocks per game (5.3) on the season, which could bode well for Bryant's overall production.

ALSO CONSIDER: Onyeka Okongwu, ATL at LAL ($6,200); Tre Jones, SAN vs. DET ($6,100); Killian Hayes, DET at SAN ($6,000); Jalen Duren, DET at SAN ($5,900); Alec Burks, DET at SAN ($5,800)

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