Thunder guard Russell Westbrook now averaging triple-double

SPORTSOKC's Russell Westbrook notches 44th triple-double of career	Email

Despite winning its previous two games, the Thunder started off slow inside of Madison Square Garden on Monday night.

Most of the discussion surrounding Monday's Knicks-Thunder game will center around yet another Russell Westbrook triple-double. "We got manhandled and that's tough".

Noah was talking about rebounding, and in particular the fourth quarter, when Oklahoma City turned six offensive boards into 10 points.

"I know for everybody - including myself - that goes out there on the floor, we have a job to do - and that's to help our team win", Tobias Harris said.

Westbrook had 14 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists at the break to average a triple-double for the season - 30.9 points, 11.3 assists and 10.3 rebounds through more than a month of the season.

In Minneapolis, Minnesota, George Hill had 24 points, eight rebounds and four assists, while Rudy Gobert had 16 points and 17 rebounds to lead Utah over Minnesota for their third straight win. Whether it's preparation for the next game or where we gotta get better or what happened that we need to improve in or what tweaks we need to make offensively, we're kinda focused on those things. In his 44 triple-doubles, he's averaging 25.3 points, 11.8 rebounds and 12.9 assists.

He put up this triple-double in just 18 first half minutes and became the third player in the past 20 seasons with a triple-double in a half.

Westbrook was everything you expected him to be; constantly attacking, occasionally brilliant and occasionally out-of-control. Sometimes on the same possession. Many saw the game as the best performance by Rose in a Knicks uniform, scoring a season-high 30 points but came up short to the Thunder, in a report by USA Today. His game does the finger-pointing for you.

"I think his leadership has really stood out in terms of keeping the guys connected together, keeping them working", coach Billy Donovan said. There are a lot of great players in this league. Eight of the 10 players who touched the court scored.

"It is a struggle", said Carmelo Anthony. "I think he's a guy that would have excelled back in the '80s, which is my favorite period of the National Basketball Association when (there wasn't) all this lovey-dovey, hug-and-kissing and no hard fouls". It is hard being out and coming back and trying to fit it. "Getting back defensively, which we did not do".

And the Knicks hadn't rebounded the ball well leading up to the OKC game. That's on the guards, not Noah.

Enes Kanter chipped in with 28 points and 10 rebounds as the Thunder won their third straight game, rallying from 11 down in the first quarter.

Like Donovan, Noah will run into another former coach, Tom Thibodeau.

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