OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Russell Westbrook set career highs with 49 points and 16 rebounds, and added 10 assists for his fourth consecutive triple-double, helping the Oklahoma City Thunder defeat the Philadelphia 76ers 123-118 in overtime Wednesday night.
Westbrook became the first player since Michael Jordan in 1989 to post at least four consecutive triple-doubles, according to STATS, and the first since Jordan that same year to post back-to-back triple-doubles with at least 40 points. It was the most points by any player with a triple-double since Larry Bird also scored 49 in 1992.
Westbrook wore a mask and a headband after having a bone in his right cheek fractured last Friday against Portland. He had surgery Saturday and missed Sunday’s game against the Los Angeles Lakers.
It was Westbrook’s sixth triple-double of the season and 14th of his career.
Isaiah Canaan had career highs of 31 points and eight 3-pointers, and Jason Richardson added 29 points for the 76ers.
Westbrook clinched the triple-double on a pass to D.J. Augustin that put the Thunder ahead 113-110 in overtime. Westbrook’s pull-up jumper with 38.9 seconds to play put the Thunder up by three, then Westbrook made the first of two free throws with 30.3 seconds left to make it 120-116.
Richardson’s two free throws made it a two-point game.
Westbrook made the second of two free throws with 21.9 seconds left to make it 121-118. The 76ers turned the ball over, and Westbrook made two more free throws to clinch the game.
Canaan was 5 of 5 on 3-pointers early to help the 76ers take a 32-17 lead with 3:30 left in the first quarter. The Thunder responded with a 15-0 run to tie the game, and Westbrook found Mitch McGary for a layup as time expired in the quarter to give the Thunder a 37-34 lead.
The 76ers led 59-56 at halftime, and Canaan’s eighth 3 pushed Philadelphia’s lead to 75-60 before Oklahoma City’s bench rallied late in the quarter and cut the deficit to 90-84 by the end of the period. Nick Collison’s layup tied it at 90 early in the fourth quarter.
The Thunder led 93-90 when Richardson went for a layup. McGary blocked it, and Richardson got a technical for arguing that there should have been a foul. Augustin’s technical free throw was the last point of an 18-0 run for Oklahoma City.
Westbrook made back-to baskets to push the lead to 108-99, the second with the crowd on its feet. Philadelphia called timeout, and the crowd broke into its loudest MVP chant yet for Westbrook.
Hollis Thompson’s 3-pointer with 55.2 seconds to play cut Oklahoma City’s lead to 110-107, and Richardson’s 3 with 27.1 seconds left tied the score, sending the game into overtime.
76ers: G Robert Covington sat out with a right elbow contusion. JaKarr Sampson started in his place and finished with seven points in 16 minutes. … Ish Smith, who was traded from the Thunder at the trade deadline, had two points in 15 minutes.
Thunder: C Steven Adams missed his 10th straight game with a broken bone in his right hand. He has been practicing with a soft brace. … Westbrook was named Western Conference player of the month earlier Wednesday. … Westbrook had a triple-double against the 76ers exactly one year ago to the day. … Dion Waiters had 20 points and 10 rebounds for his second career double-double.
76ers: host Jazz on Friday.
Thunder: at Chicago on Thursday.
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This article was written by Cliff Brunt from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.