Nothing can keep Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook down. Not even a fractured right cheek and a new face mask.
After missing one game due to surgery to repair the fracture, Westbrook was back on the court and attempting to continue his triple-double streak which was currently at three. And as it turns out, he was playing against the right team — the lowly Philadelphia 76ers who have allowed eight triple-doubles over the past two seasons.
When the dust settled at Chesapeake Energy Arena in OKC, the Thunder escaped with a 123-118 overtime victory. And Westbrook left the court with 49 points, 16 rebounds and 10 assists. His totals for points and rebounds are new career highs.
Just how good has Westbrook been over his last four games? In his previous game against Portland on Friday, the All-Star Game MVP tallied 40 points, 13 rebounds and 11 assists which means that he has scored at least 40 points in his last two triple-double performances. According to STATS, that is the first time any player has had back-to-back triple-doubles with at least 40 points since Michael Jordan in 1989. Pete Maravich also achieved this feat during the 1974-75 season.
Westbrook is also the first player since Jordan (1989) to record four straight triple-doubles and his 49 points on Wednesday were the most scored by any player with a triple-double since Larry Bird scored 49 in 1992.
Westbrook also joined an elite group of stars who have ever scored at least 45 points, grabbed at least 15 rebounds and dished out at least 10 assists in a single game. Who are the last four players to do it? I’m sure you’ve heard of them:
- Vince Carter – 2007 (46-16-10)
- Alvin Adams – 1977 (47-18-12)
- Kareem Abdul-Jabbar – 1975 (50-15-11)
- Wilt Chamberlain – 1968 (53-32-14)
The question now is, can Westbrook continue his hot streak? During the ’89 season, Jordan went on to record seven straight triple-doubles and 10 in a span of 11 games.
It was Westbrook’s sixth triple-double this season and 14th overall of his career. And not only is he on a four-game triple-double streak, no other player in the league has at least four this season.
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