Russell Westbrook overtakes Wilt Chamberlain with a second game 10-20-20; Oscar Robertson’s triple-double mark next – fr

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Russell Westbrook overtakes Wilt Chamberlain with a second game 10-20-20; Oscar Robertson’s triple-double mark next – fr


Russell Westbrook’s triple-double madness has become so routine – and, in large part, so alien to a meaningful victory – that hardly anyone pays it any more attention. I’m guilty of that too. It’s a shame, because the numbers Westbrook still posts are ridiculous.

On Monday night, Westbrook signed the 178th triple-double of his career, three behind Oscar Robertson’s NBA record of 181 with 14 points, 21 rebounds and 24 assists. Yes, you are reading these statistics correctly. This is only the third time in NBA history that someone has recorded a 10-20-20 game, and Westbrook is responsible for two of them. Wilt Chamberlain clinched the other with 22 points, 25 rebounds and 21 assists against Detroit in February 1968.

According to StatMuse, Westbrook is also the only player in NBA history to record multiple 20-rebound and 20-assists games during his career. Again, this has happened three times and Westbrook is responsible for two of them, Wilt, in the same game mentioned above, being the other.

For the season, Westbrook is now averaging 21.8 points, 11.3 rebounds and 11.2 assists. With seven games to go, he can’t fall below a triple-double average for the season, even though he’s recording zeros as of now.

No matter how you slice it, it’s crazy. Oscar Robertson, averaging a triple-double for an entire season, was once something of a legendary brand. Westbrook has done it four times in the past five seasons. It’s a testament to his talent, of course. But the part we don’t talk about enough is its engine. You don’t stack general numbers like that every night, year after year, standing back and letting the game, or the ball, come to you. Go get him. You live in attack mode.

Westbrook could take ill-advised shots and commit uncontrollable spins and keep a bit of energy here and there on defense, but for the most part he is completely getting by every second he’s on the pitch. And this approach has its name etched in history alongside some of the most iconic figures to ever play in the NBA.

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