Russell Westbrook has tied the great Oscar Robertson with his 41st triple-double in the 2016-17 NBA season.
With Westbrook’s performance tonight against the Milwaukee Bucks, his march towards NBA history was finally realized. 55 years have passed since Robertson set the bar for a legendary individual statistical season.
At 6-3, Westbrook is by far the smallest NBA player to average double digit rebounds. To go along with his assists (third in the NBA) and points (leads NBA), the six-time All-Star is also one step closer to averaging a triple-double for the first time since Robertson’s historic 1961-62 performance. With a few games left, it should come as no surprise if Westbrook accomplishes it.
Surprisingly, Westbrook was able to tie Robertson in a fewer amount of games. In the 1961-62 season, Robertson played in 79 games. Tonight marks the 77th game of the season for the Oklahoma City Thunder and the 77th game Westbrook has played in. Robertson also played far more minutes than Westbrook has. In the 1961-62 season, Robertson logged over 3500 minutes while Westbrook has just above 2700 minutes. This is a credit to Billy Donovan’s management and coaching.
With five games left Westbrook will have an opportunity to pass Robertson and become the lone name atop the single-season triple-double list.
Many spoke of Westbrook’s ability to achieve a high number of triple-doubles in a single season in the aftermath of the Kevin Durant departure. To tie Oscar Robertson still is among one of the more unbelievable achievements in the game of basketball — let alone by a point guard.
With this most recent triple-double, Westbrook has also tied Wilt Chamberlain for fourth all-time in NBA history with 78 triple-doubles. He now trails Jason Kidd, who owns 107, for third all-time in NBA history.
The MVP race now becomes more and more interesting. As Westbrook has flirted with NBA legend this season, the Thunder have continued their winning ways and will be making their seventh playoff appearance in eight years. Now that Westbrook has etched his name on the triple-double king list, voters may find this historical achievement too much to pass up.We invite you to follow Thunder Digest on Twitter and like Thunder Digest on Facebook. Don't forget to subsribe on Youtube! Our Podcast is on iTunes and on Stitcher. We also have a Thunder Digest Instagram account if you love fun Thunder photography!