OKLAHOMA CITY- Tuesday night was a special night for superstar Russell Westbrook as he had the game of his life while grieving over Entrepreneur and rapper Nipsey Hussle, who was shot and killed last Sunday in Los Angeles.
Westbrook dominated the Los Angeles Lakers scoring 20 points, 20 rebounds, and 21 assists in a 119-103 victory. His performance earned his team a desperate win to stay in the playoff chase, as well as another staggering record-breaking night. He joins Wilt Chamberlain with being the second player to record 20 points, 20 assists, and 21 rebounds in a game.
Westbrook’s performance was a tribute to the late Nipsey Hussle. “Grateful to play the game, but that wasn’t for me, man. That was for my bro, man. That was for Nipsey,” Westbrook said. “Rest in peace to Nipsey, man. I’m just thankful to go out there and compete at a high level, man. Thankful to have these teammates. Thankful and humbled to go out there and play the game I love.”
His teammates praised his efforts during a time where he is grieving. “It’s just epic,” said Thunder forward Paul George, also a Southern California native. “Man, the heart of that guy over there, honestly, is what’s so amazing about it.”It’s the way he’s made up. There’s not many made like Russ. It takes somebody special to go out and have a performance like that, especially with how heavy his heart was for the loss of Nipsey.”
Westbrook is on the verge of averaging his third consecutive triple-double season. With only a couple of games left, he could eclipse and shatter another record.
With a win over the Lakers, the Thunder are is in the eighth seed in the West. If this seeding stands next, the Thunder will be facing Golden State in a #1 versus #8 series.