Oklahoma City Thunder’s Russell Westbrook broke a 51-year-old NBA record when he achieved a triple-double in 10 consecutive games.
He tied Wilt Chamberlain’s run of nine triple-doubles in a row, set in 1968, on Sunday against Houston Rockets.
The 30-year-old point guard broke the record in Thunders’ 120-111 win over Portland Trail Blazers with 21 points, 14 rebounds and 11 assists.
Thunder team-mate Paul George top scored in the match with 47 points.
A triple-double is achieved when a player records a double-digit total in three of the following categories: points, total rebounds, assists, steals, and blocks.
“I just go play the game the right way,” he said. “It’s what I do. Go out and compete every night and leave it on the floor, and whatever happens, happens. I’m very, very blessed to be able to go out and play, and I don’t take it for granted.”
Westbrook clinched the record on an assist to George for a three-pointer with 3:52 remaining in the fourth quarter. “I thought he had it already,” George joked. “Usually, Russ has that by the first quarter. I didn’t know it was that close.”
It was Westbrook’s 23rd triple-double of the season and the 127th of his career. Most important to the Thunder, the team has a 9-1 record during his triple-double run. “I do know the most important thing for him is to win,” Thunder coach Billy Donovan said. “That’s what he’s about. He wants to win. I think a lot of the things he does that he gets attention for in terms of the triple-doubles are things that impact winning for our team.”
Westbrook made a three-pointer in the final minute that gave George his own triple-double. Westbrook told George that he was one assist away. “Yeah, we talked about it right before that play,” George said. “We talked about it. I was clueless at that moment. But he told me the situation. So, it’s cool to be on the other end of the triple-double.”
Westbrook figured he might as well get a different kind of assist. “It’s amazing to go out and compete,” he said, “to see your teammate, your brother, do amazing things, and you can be right on the side of him doing something special as well.”