What Is a Triple Double in Basketball?

A triple-double is a basketball statistical feat achieved when a player accumulates a total of 10 or more points, rebounds, and assists in a game. The term “triple-double” was coined by former Los Angeles Lakers public relations director Bruce Jolesch in the 1980s.

Achieving a triple-double is considered one of the most prestigious accomplishments in basketball. Only 29 players in NBA history have ever recorded a triple-double.

Players who are known for their ability to stuff the stat sheet are often referred to as “triple-double threats.” Notable current examples include Russell Westbrook, LeBron James, and Nikola Jokic.

Why Is It Called A Triple-Double?

It is called a triple-double because a player reaches double digits in three of the five major statistical categories: points, assists, rebounds, steals, and blocks.

Is There Anything Greater Than A Triple-Double In Basketball? Yes Quadruple-Double

In basketball, a triple-double is an impressive feat; there is an even rare achievement in the sport: the quadruple-double. A quadruple-double occurs when a player notches 10 or more points, rebounds, assists, and steals in a single game. This is an incredible accomplishment and has only been done a handful of times in the history of the NBA.

Is 30 Points A Triple-Double?

While technically, any combination of 10 points, 10 rebounds, and 10 assists could constitute a triple-double, the term is most often used when referring to elite performances.

How Often Do NBA Players Get A Triple-Double?

In the 2018-19 season, there were 42 instances of players recording a triple-double. Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder had the most with 22. LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers was second with 10, while Nikola Jokić of the Denver Nuggets and Ben Simmons of the Philadelphia ers each had six.

From the 1990-91 season through to the 2017-18 campaign, 1,142 regular season games resulted in a player registering a triple-double, or in other words, an average of approximately six per season over those 27 years.

How Often Do Triple-Doubles Occur In The WNBA?

In the WNBA, a triple-double is a very rare feat, and it doesn’t happen often. There have only been 22 triple-doubles in the history of the WNBA. The most recent one was by Candace Parker of the Los Angeles Sparks on August 21, 2016.

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Players Who Get Triple Bouble in Basketball

Examples of Triple Double in Basketball

Reaching the score of double digits is a rare milestone in basketball. But, many people have done that, and there are many examples of triple doubles in the game. Examples include name of players who are Top 10 Greatest Basketball Players of All Time

Some of the greatest examples are discussed below.

1. Russell Westbrook

Russell Westbrook Rockets

Russell Westbrook is currently a player with the most triple doubles. He surpassed Oscar Robertson having a record of 181, by scoring 184 triple doubles. When Westbrook broke the record of Oscar Robertson, he scored 28 points, 13 rebounds, and 21 assists. The basketball career of Westbrook was started in 2008. In 2009, he achieved his first triple double.

2. Oscar Robertson

Oscar Robertson

Oscar Robertson played his first game in NBA in 1960, in which he achieved a triple double with 21 points, 12 rebounds, and 10 assists. Robertson attained 181 triple doubles in his career. He was a player with the most triple doubles in the NBA until Russell Westbrook broke his record. Robert attained his last triple double in the year 1974.

3. Magic Johnson

Magic Johnson

Magic Johnson was considered to be one of the best basketball players in the 1980’s. He is the player who got 138 triple doubles in his career. Johnson scored his final triple double with 15 points, 10 rebounds, and 13 assists on February 14. He retired from his team (Los Angeles Lakers) in 1991.

4. Jason Kidd

Jason Kidd

Jason Kidd is ranked fourth on the list of triple double leaders. He has scored 107 triple doubles in his career. On March 1, 2011, he attained his final triple double with 13 points, 10 rebounds, and 13 assists. Kidd’s playing career came to an end in 2013 when he was retired from his team, The Knicks.

5. LeBron James

LeBron James

LeBron James stands on number fifth on the list of triple double leaders as of July 2021 with 99 triple doubles. His career in NBA started in 2003, and he scored his recent triple double on May 20, 2021, with 22 points, 11 rebounds, and 10 assists. LeBron James is a player who has achieved a triple double against every team of the NBA.

Youngest Player to Score a Triple Double

LaMelo Ball, who currently plays for the Charlotte Hornets, recorded the youngest triple-double in the history of the NBA when he was just 19 years and 140 days old. Ball achieved his triple-double against the Atlanta Hawks on March 3, 2020, with 22 points, 12 rebounds, and 11 assists.

First Player to Score a Triple Double

Andy Phillip is the player who recorded the first triple double in the history of the NBA. He achieved the first triple double in 1950. Phillip was a 6’1” guard who played for the Chicago Stags. In his career, he averaged 12.2 points per game, 4.7 rebounds per game, and 7.3 assists per game. He was an All-Star six times and was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1961.

Fastest Triple-Double In The NBA History

nikola jokic

The Denver Nuggets Nikola Jokic is the fastest player in NBA history to reach 10 points, 10 rebounds, and 10 assists in a game, doing so in just 14 min 33 seconds against the Milwaukee Bucks. This impressive feat cements Jokic’s place as one of the league’s most talented and versatile players.

Who Has The Most Triple-Doubles In Basketball?

russell westbrook

Russell Westbrook currently holds the record for the most triple-doubles in a single season with 194. He achieved this feat during the 2016-2017 NBA season. Westbrook is also the career leader in triple-doubles with 138. Other players who have achieved multiple triple-doubles in a season include Oscar Robertson, Magic Johnson, LeBron James, and Jason Kidd.

Did Michael Jordan Ever Have A Triple-Double?

Yes, Michael Jordan had a triple-double. He had many triple-doubles throughout his illustrious career. Jordan was known for his all-around game and was one of the best to do it, so it’s no surprise that he could notch a few triple-doubles.


A triple-double in basketball is an impressive feat achieved when a player accumulates a total of ten or more points, rebounds, and assists in a single game. While it is a relatively rare occurrence, it is a testament to a player’s all-around skills and ability to impact the game in multiple ways.

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