Oscar Robertson has had the record for most career triple doubles since 1961/62.
Now the Big O will share that record with Russell Westbrook. And that could only take two days as Westbrook seeks sole ownership of the record against the Atlanta Hawks on Monday.
It had become an afterthought as to when and not if Westbrook would outperform Robertson this season with his triple-double rift. But the NBA world is going to celebrate Westbrooks triple double size tonight and if he breaks the record because milestones like these just don’t change hands often. The last time an NBA record was broken was when Ray Allen overtook Reggie Miller on the all-time 3-pointer list in 2011. That was a decade ago!
This triple doubles record has been The Big O’s since 1962. Only two men have ever recorded 180 or more triple doubles. Legendary Magic Johnson never got past 138, Jason Kidd retired at 107, and LeBron James is the next active player to have the most triple doubles at 99. – Ohm Youngmisuk
Russell Westbrook recorded his 181st career triple-double, joining him with Oscar Robertson for most in NBA history. It is Westbrook’s 10th triple-double career against the Pacers, his largest against a single opponent in his career pic.twitter.com/umLEQ2ZO7m
– ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) May 9, 2021
Congratulations to Russell Westbrook 👏
Fittingly, it happens in the hometown of Big O. https://t.co/VZ4v3z9K9r
– Indiana Pacers (@Pacers) May 9, 2021
Impressive. Impressive. @ WashWizards win in OT. @ russwest44 with the end of the game block to seal the deal. Russ signs Oscar Robertson for the all-time triple-double record. In 9th place you play great basketball.#DCAboveAll https://t.co/DFTridnniR
– Ted Leonsis (@TedLeonsis) May 9, 2021
Westbrook’s way to break Robertson’s record
Triple-Double No. 1: The first triple-double of Westbrook’s NBA career took place on March 2, 2009 with the Thunder – the only one of his rookie season.
Year 1 without Kevin Durant (2016-17): Westbrook recorded 42 triple doubles to break the Big O’s single-season record set more than 50 years earlier.
The following year: On a visit to Atlanta, Westbrook joined Robertson, Johnson and Kidd as the only players with 100 triple doubles.
2019: Westbrook set the NBA record with 11 triple doubles. He owns three of the four longest such streaks in the history of the league. Later that year as a rocket, Russ’ 28 points, 13 boards, and 10 groschen moved him ahead of Magic Johnson on the NBA’s triple-double list
Now? Since then he has been the triple double leader of wizards.
To make his name in NBA history
Westbrook recorded his 10th career triple-double against the Pacers, his most against a single opponent. He is the fourth player in NBA history to score at least 10 triple doubles against a team, along with Robertson, Johnson and Wilt Chamberlain.
Westbrook has a triple-double against all 30 teams not just once, but several times. While he has never had quadruples doubles in his career, he has triple doubles five times and at least ten turnovers in one game. That’s the majority of these games since the first individual sales in 1977-78.
Throughout his career, only Westbrook and LeBron James make the top 10 for points, rebounds and assists. Since his 2008-09 rookie season, his 181 triple doubles are more than double James’ second place in that period. Westbrook led all players on both teams on points, rebounded and assisted 41 times in his career. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, this is the majority of such games in NBA history.
Westbrook recorded its fourth season with 700 rebounds and 700 assists, making it the most overtaken Robertson in NBA history.
He will finish in triple doubles as the leader of the table for the sixth time in his career and play the third most seasons in NBA history with Robertson. Only Kidd (11) and Johnson (10) have more seasons like this.
ESPN’s statistics and intelligence contributed to this story.