Shai Gilgeous-Alexander showed out for the Oklahoma City Thunder in their victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves.
The 21-year-old continued to build on his impressive sophomore season, going for his first career triple-double with 20 points, 20 rebounds and 10 assists.
Congratulations to Shai Gilgeous-Alexander 🇨🇦 on recording his FIRST career TRIPLE-DOUBLE! 🙌- NBA Canada (@NBACanada) January 14, 2020
⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀@shaiglalex tallied 20 PTS, 20 REB & 10 AST in OKC's win over Minnesota. #ThunderUp | @okcthunder pic.twitter.com/uh9oALLve2
His 20 points came on an efficient 8-for-12 shooting from the field and 2-for-3 from 3, while his 20 rebounds were a career-high.
👏 @shaiglalex notches his 1st career triple-double with 20 PTS, a career-high 20 REB, and 10 AST in the @okcthunder win! #ThunderUp pic.twitter.com/YAAzMl9bul- NBA (@NBA) January 14, 2020
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The triple-double put Gilgeous-Alexander in elite company in a couple of different ways.
He joined Hall of Famer Steve Nash as the only two Canadians in NBA history to record a triple-double. Nash had three triple-doubles in his career, with his first coming at age 29, so Gilgeous-Alexander is only two behind the two-time MVP and on a good track to maybe someday pass him.
He also joined Russell Westbrook as the only two guards to record a game of 20 points, 20 rebounds and 10 assists in the last 30 (!) seasons, according to StatMuse. With that, he is also the youngest player in NBA history to record that same stat line in a single game and passed Shaquille O'Neal as the youngest player with a 20-rebound triple-double in NBA history.
VOTE GILGEOUS-ALEXANDER INTO THE ALL-STAR GAME!
In his post-game interview, he stated, "Coach just challenged me before the game to fill up the stat sheet. He knows what I'm capable of and challenges me every day. I just wanted to step up to the challenge."
Shortly after that statement, teammate Dennis Schroder crashed the interview by showering Gilgeous-Alexander with a couple of water bottles to honour the young star on his career-night.
A special performance from a truly special young talent.
Gilgeous-Alexander is now averaging a team-high 19.9 points to go with 5.7 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 1.2 steals per game. With the win, the Thunder are now 23-17 on the season holding down the No. 7 seed in the West, but are just 1.5 games back from overtaking the Dallas Mavericks for the No. 6 seed.