Westbrook fuses the Pacers with a night for history

Match for the base legend, who destroyed the Wizards with numbers (35 + 14 + 21) that only Magic and Robertson had approached until today.


This is Russell Westbrook. After his astonishing display against the Pacers (final 132-124) his coach, Scott Brooks, with whom he has a long relationship since the (happy) times in OKC, said that the point guard "is not a perfect player" but also that He had never seen anything like it in his life in the NBA: "And I've been in the League for thirty years now ...". Westbrook. A magnet for the most polarized debates, a player always on the edge, between epic and disaster, between despair and enlightenment. Westbrook, sometimes an indestructible hammer and sometimes a fragile child, between aggression and pain, played a huge game, difficult to explain, to lead a team without Bradley Beal (low due to hip discomfort): 35 points, 14 rebounds, 21 assists.

No empty calories: The Wizars needed to squeeze every ounce of energy out of Westbrook, which skimmed 40 minutes on the track and sparked a fierce and rather unexpected reaction. With 110-116 for the normally more functional Pacers in the middle of the fourth quarter, the game closed with a partial 22-8 open with an 11-0 that took ahead a rival with more talent but with a cowardly, flabby tendency. . Neither Domantas Sabonis (35 points, 11 rebounds, 6 assists), nor Malcolm Brodgon (26 points, 8 assists, 5/10 in triples) could contain the bleeding. Neither a Caris LeVert who accumulates games of little efficiency in Indiana: 8 + 5 + 4, 3/14 in shots.

Westbrook blew up the Pacers, it is difficult to explain the game in other terms beyond Hachimura's 26 points and 8 rebounds, Avdija's 12 + 8, Neto's 15 points and Hutchison's good debut (18 + 5). Gafford was playing good minutes again for his new team (11 points) when he suffered a nasty leg injury. And the Wizards remain at 17-28, now the sixth worst team in the NBA, by the 21-24 of the Pacers, ninth from a loose East in which those of the capital, despite the passes, are two games away from play in.

There Westbrook looks, to the playoffs, or so he insisted on repeating after a monstrous game that is already history: that 35 + 14 + 21 is something never seen and only two legends like Magic Johnson and Oscar Robertson, and only once each one, they had so far scored triple-doubles with at least 30 points and 20 assists. In the past five years, Westbrook has reached 20 points and 20 assists six times, and the entire rest of the NBA, one (Chris Paul). Plus, he already holds the Wizards record (16) for triple-doubles. He has done it in 38 games. It belonged to Darrell Walker (15), who played 284 between 1987 and 1991. In the league's history, he is already only 20 behind Oscar Robertson (181 to 161). The question is not if he will surpass the mythical Big O ... it is only if he will achieve it this season.

Photos from as.com
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