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GIFs, NBA, Smack / May 8, 2014 / 2:32 am

Russell Westbrook Gets A Cheap Triple-Double

Russell Westbrook, Matt Barnes

Russell Westbrook, Matt Barnes (Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports)

The Thunder were putting the finishing touches on 112-101 Game 2 win over the Clippers Wednesday night when the OKC scorekeeper decided to say, “Oh what the hell, lets give Russ his triple-double.” At the time, Russell Westbrook had 31 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists, but his pass to Thabo Sefolosha with a 1:30 remaining was somehow counted as a dime. As you’ll see, it was a spectacularly cheap way to give him the final dish he needed for a triple-double.

Russ threw a cross-court pass to Thabo in the near corner, and if Sefolosha had shot it right away and hit a 3-pointer, than we have no qualms with the assist Russ was awarded. But Thabo wrangled with Willie Green for the ball and positioning before scooting by him on the baseline for a couple dribbles and the layup. This is no assist, even by the relatively loose definition of the term these days in the NBA.

As such, Russ should be like Kevin Durant, who also played a great game, but did not, technically, have a triple-double:

KD had 32 points, 12 rebounds and nine assists after a scorching opening session.

(H/T reddit)

Explain how this can be counted as an assist?

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  • 2cents

    Excellent point Spencer. I’ve never understood what counts as an assist, because it’s really open to interpretation.

    I am also starting to see that with more people relying on analytics to rate players skills, maybe it’s time we did away with the old way of rating a player’s abilities and started to use some more of the newer techniques?

  • TheFrankman

    Crap like this is why the NBA should employ an official traveling head scorekeeper.

  • jaceking

    nah shouldnt be an assist. i kno the definition of an assist has changed quite a bit over the decades.. but i always judge an assist by the path of least resistance. as in, how easy it was to get the basket. that up there wasnt easy, it required more maneuvering.

  • Camron Young

    If he didn’t get tangled I’d count it. If he got the ball, and ran straight to the hoop for a layup, then Russel set the play up. instead, he got tangled for the ball so I wouldnt count it

  • JB Chandler

    Hockey rules should apply here: If you pass it to the guy who scores, no matter how long it takes, you get an assist.