On April 19th in 2017, Russell Westbrook recorded his first career 50-point triple-double in the playoffs, putting on a show in Game 2 of the Oklahoma City Thunder's first-round series with the Houston Rockets.
In 41:22 minutes of action, he finished with 51 points, 13 assists, 10 rebounds, and four steals.
However, his performance was in vain as the Rockets rallied from a double-digit, second-half deficit to win 115-111 and take a 2-0 series lead. James Harden led the way for the Rockets with a team-high 35 points.
"I don't give a [expletive] about the line," Westbrook said postgame. "We lost."
Overall, this was Westbrook's fourth career 50-point triple-double and sixth postseason triple-double. He had recorded three as part of the 2016-17 season where he became only the second player ever to average a triple-double and finish with a record-breaking 42 for the season.
In fact, this performance came just 10 days after he had recorded a 50-point triple-double in Denver.
To put it in historical context, Westbrook's 51 points were not only a franchise-high in playoff scoring but it was also the most points scored while recording a triple-double in NBA playoff history.
Other notable events on April 19th
- In 1965, five Celtics scored at least 20 points in a 129-123 Game 3 victory against the Los Angeles Lakers if the Finals. This was the first time in Finals history and a feat that occurred just two other times in 1987 when the same two teams met in the Finals
- In 1986, Atlanta Hawks' Spud Webb set the rookie playoff record for assists (18) as the Hawks defeated the Detroit Pistons 137-125 at the Omni in Game 2 of their Eastern Conference first-round series. In the same game, Dominique Wilkins scored 50 points (19-of-28 FG).
- In 1988, prior to a game against the Bucks, the Philadelphia 76ers honoured Julius Erving by retiring his number 6 and unveiling a larger-than-life Dr. J statue.
- In 1990, Hakeem Olajuwon scored 52 points (21-of-34 FG) in a 130-127 loss to the Denver Nuggets.
- In 1991, Moses Malone, as a member of the Atlanta Hawks, set the NBA record for most games played (1,046) without a disqualification. By doing so, he broke Wilt Chamberlain's record.
- In 1992, Dennis Rodman led the league in rebounding for his first rebounding title with 1,530 rebounds for an 18.7 rpg average. Those are the highest numbers since Wilt Chamberlain had posted 1,572 boards for a 19.2 rpg average during the 1971-72 season. Rodman would go on win an NBA record seven consecutive rebounding titles.
- In 1992, David Robinson of the San Antonio Spurs became the third player in NBA history after Larry Bird (1985-86) and Cliff Hagan (1959-60), to rank among the league's Top 10 in five different statistical categories. Robinson averaged 23.2 ppg (7th); 12.2 rpg (4th); 55.1% field goal percentage (7th); 2.32 spg (5th); and 4.49 bpg (1st).
Game-winning buzzer-beaters on April 19th
Stephon Marbury vs. San Antonio Spurs in 2003
Gus Williams vs. Dallas Mavericks in 1984
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