Breaking News
Home / Sports / Russell Westbrook, Paul George and … Jeff Ruland? The Triple-Double Through Time

Russell Westbrook, Paul George and … Jeff Ruland? The Triple-Double Through Time

It was a humble TV listing, informing readers that the Knicks would be playing the Washington Bullets on MSG that night. The short item noted that “The Knicks tried double-teaming Jeff Ruland in the second of those games, but the tactic didn’t work: He responded with a triple double-digit effort — 22 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists.”

It was Dec. 29, 1984. And for the very first time, The New York Times had cited the triple-double.

On Monday night, Russell Westbrook completed an unprecedented 10th consecutive triple-double, with 21 points, 14 rebounds and 11 assists as the Oklahoma City Thunder defeated the Portland Trail Blazers. Westbrook broke the record of nine, set by Wilt Chamberlain in 1968.

But while triple-doubles are no longer uncommon — Westbrook’s teammate Paul George turned in an even more immpressive line (47 points, 10 rebounds, 12 assists) on Monday — the term is relatively new. Like Chamberlain, some of the greatest practitioners made every one of their triple-doubles when triple-doubles were not even a thing.

The Times quickly embraced the triple-double. Two days after its debut, the label made it into an ordinary sports article, this time without the clunky words “digit” or “effort.” Precedent had been set.

Westbrook has taken the triple-double to new heights, though, actually averaging a triple-double for the last two seasons. He is on pace to do so again this season. And unlike his early predecessors, he is keenly aware of the stat, often looking to add that one more assist or rebound that he needs late in a game.

Westbrook now has 127 total triple-doubles, closing in on Johnson, the inspiration for the term, who has 138.

But above all of them is Oscar Robertson, the only other man to average a triple-double; he had 181 in his Hall of Fame career.

His last one came in 1974, when the feat was still unnamed, at least in The Times.

About yogabeautyhealth

Check Also

Two Sixers players spotted looking at cellphone during playoff loss to Brooklyn Nets

Philadelphia 76ers head coach Brett Brown, left, and Joel Embiid, right, of Cameroon, look up …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *