It’s no secret that getting a triple-double in the NBA is difficult, even though many players these days make it looks so easy. In fact, despite having a shortened season, the NBA tallied the most triple-doubles in a season ever with 142. Clearly, no other player personified that than Russell Westbrook.
The Washington Wizards star tallied 38 triple-doubles this season to surpass Oscar Robertson for the NBA record. On Thursday, in their do-or-die play-in tournament duel with the Indiana Pacers, Westbrook was just two rebounds shy of finishing with his 39th triple-double.
In a postgame interview, NBA on TNT host Kenny Smith told Westbrook that he had a recent conversation with the legendary Michael Jordan. He asked MJ what’s the hardest part about getting a triple-double. And apparently, Jordan and Brodie had the same answer.
“The hardest part that you can’t control would probably be the assists. I can’t control if guys make shots. I can make it easier for them but I can’t control if they score or not. But I can rebound on my own, I can score on my own.”
Just in case you’re interested, Smith didn’t agree with Westbrook and Jordan, saying he thinks rebounding is the hardest part in getting a triple-double. Maybe that’s why he never got a single one in his career. Sorry, The Jet.
“I just wanted to thank you for letting us down.” 😂
Russ explained the hardest part of getting a triple-double… AND Chuck called him out after he came up short in the Wizards' win. pic.twitter.com/TXr9Kyu1df
— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) May 21, 2021
It’s worth noting that Westbrook is one of Jordan’s favorite athletes, even signing him to his Jordan Brand.
Smith and co-host Charles Barkley, meanwhile, also bet on Westbrook to get a triple-double against the Pacers. As mentioned, he failed to do so, prompting Barkley to hilariously call him out: “I just want to thank you for letting us down.”
Wizards fans sure hope that Russell Westbrook doesn’t do the same thing to them.