'Done the impossible': NBA in disbelief over Russell Westbrook feat

·Sports Reporter
·4-min read
Russell Westbrook surpassed the NBA's career triple-double record during the Washington Wizards' loss to the Atlanta Hawks on Tuesday. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/NBAE via Getty Images)
Russell Westbrook surpassed the NBA's career triple-double record during the Washington Wizards' loss to the Atlanta Hawks on Tuesday. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/NBAE via Getty Images)

Russell Westbrook has cemented his place in NBA history by surpassing league legend Oscar Robertson's career triple double record.

The former MVP notched his 182nd triple double with a 28 point, 21 assist and 13 rebound effort in the Washington Wizards' 125-124 loss to the Atlanta Hawks on Tuesday.

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A missed three-pointer to win the game at the buzzer slightly soured the historic achievement, which came after he tied Robertson's record against the Indiana Pacers last weekend.

Westbrook eclipsed the record when he grabbed his 10th rebound with 8:30 remaining in the fourth quarter. The moment came during a 19-1 run that cut Atlanta's lead from 19 to one. 

He already had 21 points and 16 assists. The Atlanta crowd responded to Westbrook's history-making rebound with chants of "Russell."

Westbrook missed a potential game-winning 3-pointer in the final seconds. Afterward, he sought out the game ball from officiating crew chief Tom Washington before accepting congratulations from his peers.

Robertson's record stood for nearly 50 years from the final triple-double of his 14-year career on March 24, 1974. Westbrook is in the 13th season of his career and has played 100 fewer games than Robertson.

Magic Johnson's 138 career triple-doubles are third on the all-time list. 

No other active player has reached the century mark. Injured Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James is sitting on 99 career triple-doubles.

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"The things he’s been able to do, hopefully, we will say, ‘Give him his love, give him his respect,’" Johnson told The Athletic's David Aldridge after Westbrook posted his ridiculous 14-point, 21-rebound, 24-assist triple-double last week. 

"This is really big. This is something I couldn’t even do. I know how big it is."

Robertson is no stranger to Westbrook coming for his records. The Hall of Famer's single-season triple-double record of 41 in 1961-62 stood until Westbrook's 42 during his 2016-17 MVP campaign. 

At the time, those two seasons marked the only times a player had ever averaged a triple-double for an entire season.

"I could not be happier for him," Robertson wrote for The Undefeated in 2017, when Westbrook broke his single-season record. 

Robertson even predicted in that same column four years ago, "If he stays healthy, there’s no reason [Westbrook] couldn’t eventually break my career record of 181 triple-double games."

Anthony Davis stars in Lakers' NBA win over Suns

Anthony Davis had 42 points and 12 rebounds and the Los Angeles Lakers reignited their NBA title defence with a commanding 123-110 victory over the high-flying Phoenix Suns.

The Suns are now two games behind the Utah Jazz (50-18) atop the Western Conference with only four games remaining while the Lakers, who never trailed at Staples Center, improved to 38-30 and one game behind the sixth-place Portland Trail Blazers.

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Alex Caruso each had 17 points on Sunday and the Lakers, missing LeBron James and Kyle Kuzma, won for just the third time in their past 11 games.

"I think I'm feeling about 20 per cent of my old self ... just kidding," Davis joked after the game.

"I'm getting my legs back, I'm getting my rhythm back. Getting my steps back on both ends of the floor, so feeling good ... We're headed in the right direction."

Cameron Payne had 24 points for Phoenix, Devin Booker added 21, and Chris Paul's double-double included 13 points and 10 assists.

With Yahoo Sports US/AAP

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