Russell Westbrook tallied 27 points, 17 rebounds and 15 assists to lift the Oklahoma City Thunder to a dramatic 119-117 win over the Philadelphia 76ers, capping a heart-pounding three overtime NBA contest.
Westbrook, an American, posted his 10th triple-double of the season and the 89th of his career on Friday night in front of 20,600 at Philadelphia’s Wells Fargo Center arena.
“This is what we live for,” said Westbrook. “On the road, great environment, come out and get the win like this.”
Westbrook shot 10-of-33 from the field and was one of two Thunder players to play more than 50 minutes. Westbrook was on the court 52 minutes and center Steven Adams played for 51 minutes.
“I never stop, never stop. I have been grinding my whole life. I was never given anything,” said Westbrook, who grew up in south Los Angeles. “I don’t care about percentages. All I care about is wins.”
Paul George and Carmelo Anthony scored 24 points apiece for the Thunder, who improved to .500 at 14-14 with their third straight road win. It was also their 17th consecutive victory over the Sixers.
Raymond Felton had 14 for the Thunder, who shot 47 of 113.
Westbrook engineered the drive and pinpoint pass to Andre Roberson for the winning basket late in the third overtime.
“I told him, ‘If you’re open, I’ll hit you again,'” Westbrook said, referring to Roberson’s earlier missing a similar shot at the end of the second overtime.
Thunder coach Billy Donovan said: “We still kept battling and kept fighting. We didn’t give up.”
Joel Embiid led the Sixers with 34 points while playing a career-high 48 minutes. J.J. Redick scored 19 points and Dario Saric added 16. Jerryd Bayless had 14 points and Ben Simmons scored 12 points, 11 assists and nine rebounds.
Robert Covington returned after missing two games with a bruised lower back. However Covington struggled mightily, shooting a dismal four of 21 from the floor and finishing with 11 points.
Philadelphia attempted a season-high 46 three-pointers but only made 13 in their first triple-overtime game since 1992 against the Miami Heat.
– Gobert hurt –
Elsewhere, the Utah Jazz snapped a four-game losing skid with a 107-95 win over the first place Boston Celtics but the victory came at a cost. They lost two key players to injuries in the first half.
Utah’s Rudy Gobert left the game in the opening two minutes with a knee injury and Derrick Favors suffered a cut near his left eye that needed six stitches.
The win also ended a nine-game Boston Garden losing streak for the Jazz, who posted their first win there since 2008.
Gobert, of France, will have an MRI on Saturday to determine the extent of the damage. Early US media reports said he suffered a left MCL sprain.
Gobert missed 11 games earlier this season with a knee bruise, following a knee injury in last year’s playoffs.
He was injured when Favors fell into his leg going for a rebound.
An 0-for-18 Boston shooting drought over more than 10 minutes in the second quarter allowed the Jazz to seize command of the game.
Ricky Rubio scored 22 points and added seven rebounds and five assists.
Rookie Donovan Mitchell scored eight straight points for his team late in the game, finishing with 17 points, nine assists and six rebounds.
In Houston, Chris Paul delivered at both ends of the court as the Houston Rockets rolled to a 124-109 wire-to-wire win over the San Antonio Spurs.
Paul finished with 28 points, eight assists and seven steals as the Rockets extended their winning streak to 12 games. – Agence France-Presse