‘Just Get Outrageous’: Lakers’ Russell Westbrook Explains His Approach to Getting Triple Doubles

Published 10/05/2021, 11:30 AM EDT
Concluding the regular season, Oscar Roberston also endorsed Westbrook for the MVP.


Russell Westbrook’s rise to prominence came back in the 2015-16 season when he first came close to averaging a triple-double. Subsequently, his breakout year was when he finally completed that feat in 2016-17. Consequently, Russell Westbrook won the regular season’s Most Valuable Player award that season.

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Fans across the league have often criticized Westbrook for his “stat-padding”. However, he has embraced that criticism as a part of the package of being one of the best in the league. And that claim is not baseless, since he holds the record for most triple-doubles by a player in a single season and career as well.

Recently, he appeared on Jimmy Kimmel’s talk show. Jimmy asked him if his record is something that is on his mind every time he steps on the court. This is what he had to say.

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Russell Westbrook on his consistent approach every game

Russell told Jimmy, “You know what? Um, sometimes you know throughout the game you kind of can feel like you’re getting close. You have nine or ten assists, points, and stuff, rebounds and like the arenas, they see the stats, so you obviously see them um. But for me like when I’m playing I try not to get triple-doubles that are like 10 10, and 10. I like to just get outrageous and go 20-20-20.”

Westbrook makes triple-doubles look so easy that legends have felt that the league takes him for granted. In the past five seasons, Westbrook has averaged triple-doubles in four of them.

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Sep 28, 2021; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Lakers guard Russell Westbrook (0) is photographed during media day at the UCLA Health and Training Center in El Segundo, Calif. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Will Westbrook be able to average triple-doubles this season?

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Westbrook has joined a veteran squad that needed a primary playmaker since the aging LeBron James was presumably looking to reduce the burden on his shoulders. With the number of big men in this roster, the opportunities will be many for assisting through pick and rolls, lobs, and alley-oops. Combining that with his iconic passing IQ, Russ will still have some hope to make the same impact on the floor.

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Sep 28, 2021; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Lakers guard Russell Westbrook (0) answers questions during media day at the UCLA Health and Training Center in El Segundo, Calif. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

However, the surplus big men on the Lakers also means that the rebounding chances for Westbrook might get limited. Therefore, he might have to work extra harder in that department to maintain his stellar record. He himself has admitted he will not be selfish with the ball this time. So it seems unlikely that he might push for it. However, with his skill and speed on the floor, it might just inevitably happen.

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Chaitanya Dadhwal

218 articles

Chaitanya Dadhwal is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports. Even though his journalism is driven by his desire to understand both sides of an argument and give a neutral perspective, he is biased towards Houston Rockets and Arsenal, and he has shown exactly how loyal he can be through tough times. Currently a Law student at Jindal Global Law School, he aims to have his own sports management firm one day and enjoys rap music during his time off.

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