Westbrook Tallies Historic Triple-Double, Drains Buzzer-Beater To Knock Off Nuggets
DENVER - Russell Westbrook’s NBA record 42nd triple-double of the season lifts the Thunder to a 106-105 win over the Nuggets on Sunday afternoon in Denver.
Westbrook drained a 36-foot 3-pointer at the buzzer to give OKC the walk-off win after scoring the Thunder’s final 15 points. Westbrook finished with 50 points, 16 rebounds and 10 assists to give him his third 50-point triple-double of the season.
Not only did it give the Thunder the win, but it knocked the Nuggets out of playoff contention as well.
After trailing 101-88 with 4:33 left in the game, Westbrook immediately went down the court and dished a pass to Semaj Christon for a wide-open 3-pointer that gave him the triple-double record. Even though the Thunder was still looking at a double-digit deficit, the feat appeared to ignite the Thunder.
Westbrook went down and finished a pair of layups at the rim, before drawing a flagrant foul on Nikola Jokic to give him three free throws to bring the Thunder within five points with 1:56 left in the game. After Jokic hit a pair of freebies on the other end, OKC was staring at a 105-98 deficit.
With nothing to play for except for pride, Westbrook continued to push the pedal to the metal. Westbrook drew a foul on Jamal Murray, which resulted in three free throws to bring OKC within four points, then quickly added another layup to cut OKC’s deficit to only two points with 27 seconds left.
Jokic responded with a miss on the other end, which kept the Thunder alive with 2.9 seconds on the game clock. Westbrook gathered the ball following a timeout and put the bow on one of the best regular season's in sports history.
Not only did Westbrook's teammates celebrate on the court after his shot, but the fans inside of the Pepsi Center were cheering despite watching their hometown team collapse down the stretch.
Enes Kanter added 15 points off the bench for the Thunder while Steven Adams added a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds.
Danilo Gallinari led Denver with a season-high 34 points while Jokic scored 23 of his own.
The Thunder will close out its four-game road trip on Tuesday when it takes on the Timberwolves in Minnesota.