Daily fantasy basketball: Russell Westbrook is on another planet

Daily fantasy basketball: Russell Westbrook is on another planet

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Daily fantasy basketball: Russell Westbrook is on another planet

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(Mark D. Smith, USA TODAY Sports)

There are just two games on the NBA slate Thursday,which doesn't leave a lot of low-hanging fruit to pick.

Damian Lillard ($8,400; 16.8% of your cap) experienced a miserable 1-for-13 shooting drought last night, and tonight he'll have to contend with Rajon Rondo in his face.Lillard scooped up 18 boards to salvage a 31-point night on FantasyScore. He's a risky proposition with the masked man in Oklahoma City just $900 more.

LaMarcus Aldridge ($8,100; 16.2%) has some upside with Mavs C Tyson Chandler (hip) banged up. LMA has 44.3 FantasyScore points in his last two games. He's at a premium price, so you'll need to decide if paying it best serves your roster.

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Featured stud

G Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City Thunder at Chicago Bulls
$9,300 salary | 18.6% of cap

Westbrook's production has been staggering. He put up 90 fantasy points in his return from facial surgery Wednesday in what was one of the best outputs on our daily game this season. He topped 70 fantasy points in each of his last two games before the injury. Clearly, Westbrook is on another planet right now and needs to be started against a Bulls roster decimated by injuries.

Prove your lineup-building skills are money.

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Start

C Joakim Noah, Chicago Bulls vs. Oklahoma City Thunder
$6,600 salary | 13.2% of cap

Noah delivered again Tuesday night with 44 fantasy points, which was his largest total in his last 10 games. The Bulls have made him a focal point, and he'll command a lot of attention on offense. OKC is in the middle of the pack at defending centers the last five games. Another big performance could be in store.

F Nikola Mirotic, Chicago Bulls vs. Oklahoma City Thunder
$3,800 salary | 7.6% of cap

Mirotic (shoulder) is hampered by a shoulder issue, but he's probable for tonight. Good thing, too, because he has averaged 37.6 fantasy points the last two games. The Bulls are depleted due to injuries, and Mirotic should remain in the fold. He remains a solid bet at this price.

G Wesley Matthews, Portland Trail Blazers vs. Dallas Mavericks
$4,900 salary | 9.8% of cap

With a 27.7-point average the last three games, Matthews has been steady but unspectacular. He did go off for 47.8 fantasy points Feb. 25, after a 12-point egg. He's a good midrange option, but there isn't a lot of upside.

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Bench

G Rajon Rondo, Dallas Mavericks at Portland Trail Blazers
$7,000 salary | 14.0% of cap

Rondo put up 26.8 fantasy points Monday, which really isn't a good total at his price. Adding to the disappointment: That was his best performance in his last 10 games. Portland has had leaks in its defense against point men of late, but Rondo hasn't meshed well enough with his new team to warrant consideration.

G D.J. Augustin, Oklahoma City Thunder at Chicago Bulls
$5,000 salary | 10.0% of cap

With Westbrook back after missing a game due to facial surgery, Augustin still put up 28 fantasy points last night. It was against the woeful Philadelphia 76ers, and his price is too prohibitive to risk that kind of production becoming an anomaly. On the bright side, Augustin played 37 minutes to Westbrook's 42. If the team continues to run two point guards together, he could still be a worthwhile play. However, use tonight as a gauge before making that determination.

HoopsHype and USA TODAY Fantasy Sports offer daily fantasy basketball advice throughout the 2014 season. Play for free or for prizes at FantasyScore today.

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