On Monday evening, May 10 in Atlanta, Wizards Point Guard Russell Westbrook became the NBA’s all-time triple-double-leader by tallying the 182nd of his career – a record that has stood for 47 years since Oscar Robertson’s 181st and final triple-double of his career.
The Wizards lost to the game by the closest of margins to the home team Hawks, 125-124, after Westbrook failed to connect on a three-point attempt with time running out.
After Monday’s game, Westbrook called the record “a blessing” to mentioned in the same sentence with Robertson and former players Ervin “Magic” Johnson and Jason Kidd who recorded more than 100 triple doubles in their careers.
“It’s just something that I never dreamed about as a young kid growing up in L.A.,” he said. “Normally I don’t like to pat myself on the back, but tonight I will because I’m so grateful for the ones before me and so blessed and thankful for the man above for allowing me to go out and do what I do.”
In games where Westbrook has recorded a triple-double, including the Wizards’ current 21-14 record where they have won 13 of their last 16 games with a Westbrook triple-double, his teams have a combined 136-45 (.751).
Westbrook recorded 138 of his triple-doubles as a member of the Oklahoma City Thunder – the most in their franchise history. He’s also the franchise leader for Washington (36) – a record he set after breaking Darrell Walker’s record of 15 in just 38 games with the Wizards.
Westbrook recorded his first career triple-double on March 2, 2009, during his rookie season, a 17-point, 10-rebound and 10-assist outing against the Dallas Mavericks. Westbrook has four career seasons with at least 25 triple-doubles, the most in league history, and averaged a triple-double in each of those four seasons.
With 182 triple-doubles in 940 games played, Westbrook has tallied a triple-double in 19.4% of his games played, the highest rate among the top 15 triple-double leaders. Since 2016-17, Westbrook has tallied a triple-double in 145 of 353, or 41.1% of his games played. Westbrook leads the league this season with 36 triple-doubles, the second-most triple-doubles in a single season in his career and the third-most in league history.
Former and current NBA players and fans posted congratulatory remarks to Westbrook on social media.
Kidd, an assistant coach with the Los Angeles Lakers, posted a picture Tuesday of himself playing defense against Westbrook when he played with the Thunder.
“Congrats @russwest44 on breaking the @NBA all-time triple double record! Keep it going, Future Hall of Famer. It’s going to be fun to watch! #KingofTripleDoubles.”
Kevin Love (32), Cleveland Cavaliers center, played with Westbrook in college at the University of California, Los Angeles.
“Congrats to @russwest44 for breaking the all-time triple double record. The game hasn’t witnessed someone quite like Russ,” Love said Monday on his Instagram page. “Let’s all take a moment to appreciate his sustained greatness over the course of his career. Happy for you my brother. Love to the family!! Legacy!!”
Reese Waters, who hosts “The Reese Waters Show” on ESPN 980-AM, posted a video Tuesday on Twitter that Westbrook “is king of the triple double.”
“When Ice Cube messed around and had a triple double, he wrote a song about it. That’s how much of a good day it was,” he said. “Russ has had 182 good days. Congratulations brodie, we love you.”