2013 Fantasy Basketball Debate: Chris Paul vs. Russell Westbrook
As we look towards the 2013-14 fantasy basketball season, the debate for the best point guard in the NBA seems to come down to Los Angeles Clippers’ Chris Paul and Oklahoma City Thunder’s Russell Westbrook.
It seems like a tough debate at first, but after looking at the numbers and comparing the two, Westbrook is hands down the better fantasy basketball option.
Westbrook is averaging a ridiculous 23.2 points a game, which is a total you would expect from an All-Star shooting guard, not a point guard. Paul is only scoring 16.9 points a game, which is pretty far behind Westbrook’s total.
Westbrook is grabbing 5.3 boards per game, while Paul is only averaging 3.7 rebounds per contest. It is a rarity to find a guard that can rebound like Westbrook and the extra boards certainly help owners be more competitive in the ever-important roto-category of rebounding.
Westbrook is only 24, so you have to think that his youth will help him play more games in the immediate future. Paul seems to be on the sideline a handful of games each year due to nagging injuries, and it will only get worse after another season of wear and tear.
Also, Paul is only playing in 33.2 minutes per game this year and has spent a good amount of time of the fourth quarter on the bench. It already appears that Paul is starting to slow down a little. Conversely, Westy played in 35.4 minutes a game in OKC, and the extra couple minutes have helped him fill the box score more throughout the week.
Everyone knows that Paul is an amazing defender and his 2.4 steals per game is leading the entire NBA. However, Westbrook is also stealing 1.8 passes per game, which is nothing to sneeze at. Paul still gets the slight advantage in steals.
The only real statistical fantasy advantage that Paul has, though, is in the assist category. CP3 is averaging 9.6 dimes per game, which trails only the injured Rajon Rondo (11.1) of the Boston Celtics. While Westbrook’s 7.5 dimes may not stack up to Paul’s total, the combination of everything else makes the small decline in dimes worth it in the long run.
No disrespect to CP3, but Westbrook is simply the better all-around fantasy point guard at this point in both of their careers. You can’t go wrong with drafting Westbrook or Paul in the first round next season, but if I had to choose one, I would take the new Agent Zero.