Double (basketball)

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In basketball, a double is the accumulation of a double-digit number total in one of five statistical categories—points, rebounds, assists, steals, and blocked shots—in a game. Multiple players usually score double-digit points in any given basketball game; the double nomenclature is usually reserved for when a player has double-digit totals in more than one category. A double-double is the accumulation of a double-digit number total in two of the five categories in a game. The most common double-double combination is points-rebounds, followed by points-assists. Since the 1985–86 season, Karl Malone leads the National Basketball Association (NBA) in the points-rebounds combination with 811 and John Stockton leads the points-assists combination with 709. A triple-double is the accumulation of a double-digit number total in three of the five categories in a game. The most common way to notch a triple-double is through points, rebounds, and assists. Oscar Robertson leads the all-time NBA list with 181. Until his retirement in 2013, Jason Kidd led the list among active players with 107. A quadruple-double is the accumulation of a double-digit number total in four of the five categories in a game. This has occurred four times in the NBA. A quintuple-double is the accumulation of a double-digit number total in all five categories in a game. Two quintuple-doubles have been recorded by high school girls, but none have occurred in college or professional games. A similar accomplishment is the five-by-five, which is the accumulation of at least five points, five rebounds, five assists, five steals, and five blocks in a game. In the NBA, only Hakeem Olajuwon and Andrei Kirilenko have accumulated multiple five-by-fives since the 1985–86 season.

Double-double[edit]

"Double-double" redirects here. For other uses, see Double-double (disambiguation).

A double-double is defined as a performance in which a player accumulates a double-digit number total in two of five statistical categories—points, rebounds, assists, steals, and blocked shots—in a game. The most common double-double combination is points and rebounds, followed by points and assists.[1] Double-doubles are fairly common in the NBA. During the 2008–09 season, 69 players who were eligible for leadership in the main statistical categories recorded at least 10 double-doubles during the season.[2]

Special double-doubles are rare. One such double-double is called double double-double (also referred to as 20–20 or Double-20). It occurs when a player accumulates 20 or more in two different statistical categories in a game.[3][4][5] Another such double-double is called a triple double-double (also referred to as 30–30).[6] The only player in NBA history to record a quadruple double-double in NBA history is Wilt Chamberlain, who achieved the feat 5 times in his career. Of the 5 instances, 4 were recorded in his rookie season, and the fifth was achieved the following year where he scored 78 points and 43 rebounds in a game.

NBA[edit]

Double-double leaders (in regular season)[edit]

The following is a list of regular season double-double leaders since the 1985–86 season:

^ Denotes active player
* Inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame

Facts[edit]

Triple-double[edit]

A triple-double is defined as a performance in which a player accumulates a double digit number total in three of five statistical categories—points, rebounds, assists, steals, and blocked shots—in a game. The most common way for a player to achieve a triple-double is with points, rebounds, and assists, though on occasion players may record 10 or more steals or blocked shots in a game.[11] The origin of the term "triple-double" is unclear. Some sources claim that it was coined by former Los Angeles Lakers public relations director Bruce Jolesch in the 1980s in order to showcase Magic Johnson's versatility,[12][13] while others claim that it was coined by then Philadelphia 76ers media relations director Harvey Pollack in 1980.[14][15] The triple-double became an officially recorded statistic during the 1979–80 season.

A triple-double is seen as an indication of an excellent all-around individual performance.[11] However, the converse is not true; a player can have an excellent all-around performance while failing to achieve a triple-double. In the National Basketball Association (NBA), they are rare, as the top players usually accumulate fewer than 10 in a season (out of a possible 82 games in the regular NBA season).[16] They are even more rare at the collegiate level (though double-doubles are much more common). There are two primary reasons for the relative infrequency of triple-doubles at the collegiate level: the shot clock in men's college basketball is 35 seconds as opposed to 24 seconds in the NBA, and college games last only 40 minutes instead of 48 in the NBA. Both timing issues considerably reduce the number of possessions in a game and thus the chances for amassing large numbers in any one statistic, much less all three.[17]

There has been occasional controversy surrounding triple-doubles made when a player achieves the feat with a late rebound. Players with nine rebounds in a game have sometimes been accused of deliberately missing a shot late in the game in order to recover the rebound; a few have even gone so far as shooting off their opponent's basket trying to score a triple-double. To deter this, NBA rules allow rebounds to be nullified if the shot is determined not to be a legitimate scoring attempt.[18]

NBA[edit]

From the 1990–91 to the 2010–11 season, the NBA averaged 34.5 triple-doubles per season, roughly 1 in every 36 games.[19]

NCAA Division I[edit]

  • Triple-doubles in NCAA tournament history: The NCAA began keeping track of assists in 1984, or blocks and steals in 1986, so officially this has occurred eight times. However, many official tournaments have included assists, steals and blocks in their boxscores prior to that time, so unofficially this has occurred sixteen times.[62] Only three pre-1986 triple-doubles are included below.
Name Team Score Opponent Round Date Minutes
played
Points Rebounds Assists Steals Blocks Reference
Robertson, OscarOscar Robertson Cincinnati 98–85 Louisville Third place March 21, 1959 39 39 17 10 [63]
Johnson, MagicMagic Johnson Michigan State 95–64 Lamar Second round March 10, 1979 35 13 17 10
Johnson, MagicMagic Johnson Michigan State 101–67 Penn Final Four March 24, 1979 35 29 10 10 3 0 [63]
Grant, GaryGary Grant Michigan 97–109 North Carolina Second round March 14, 1987 39 24 10 10 1 0 [64]
O'Neal, ShaquilleShaquille O'Neal LSU 94–83 BYU First round March 19, 1992 31 26 13 4 1 11 [63]
Cain, DavidDavid Cain St. John's 85–67 Texas Tech First round March 18, 1993 37 12 11 11 1 0 [65]
Miller, AndreAndre Miller Utah 76–51 Arizona Elite Eight March 21, 1998 36 18 14 13 2 1 [63]
Wade, DwyaneDwyane Wade Marquette 83–69 Kentucky Elite Eight March 29, 2003 35 29 11 11 1 4 [63]
Aldrich, ColeCole Aldrich Kansas 60–43 Dayton Second round March 22, 2009 31 13 20 1 0 10 [66]
Green, DraymondDraymond Green Michigan State 76–78 UCLA First round March 17, 2011 37 23 11 10 4 0 [67]
Green, DraymondDraymond Green Michigan State 89–67 Long Island Second round March 16, 2012 35 24 12 10 1 0 [68]
  • Others
    • Kalara McFadyen of the Memphis Lady Tigers achieved perhaps the most unusual triple-double in history, without scoring a point or even attempting a shot. On February 3, 2002, in a women's Division I game against Charlotte, she had 12 assists, 10 steals, and 10 rebounds.[69][70]

Quadruple-double[edit]

Center David Robinson is the most recent NBA player to accomplish the feat of a quadruple-double by recording at least 10 points, rebounds, assists, and blocks in a game.

A quadruple-double is defined as a performance in which a player accumulates a double digit number total in four of five statistical categories—points, rebounds, assists, steals, and blocked shots—in a game.[71] This feat is extremely rare:[71][72] only four players have officially recorded a quadruple-double in National Basketball Association (NBA) history. The first American male player above the high school level to officially record a quadruple-double was Nate Thurmond, who achieved this feat in 1974 while playing for the NBA's Chicago Bulls. The first American female player above the high school level to officially record a quadruple-double was Ann Meyers, who achieved this feat in 1978 while playing for the UCLA Bruins.[73] The first male player in NCAA Division I history to record a quadruple-double was Lester Hudson.[74]

Note that a quadruple-double (or a triple-double) is much harder to accomplish in most leagues other than the NBA because of the greater length of NBA games—48 minutes (four 12-minute quarters), as opposed to 40 minutes under NCAA, FIBA, and WNBA rules. (The NCAA uses 20-minute halves, while the WNBA and FIBA use 10-minute quarters.)

NBA[edit]

Quadruple-doubles have only been possible since the 1973–74 season, when the NBA started recording both blocked shots and steals. It is often speculated by observers that other all-time greats, namely Oscar Robertson (all time triple-doubles leader with 181[59][75]), Wilt Chamberlain, Bill Russell or Jerry West could conceivably have had quadruple-doubles.[72] According to West's biography at NBA.com, he reportedly recorded a quadruple-double after having 44 points, 12 rebounds, 10 assists and 10 blocks.[76] Wilt Chamberlain also reportedly recorded a quadruple-double in Game 1 of the 1967 Eastern Division Finals against the Boston Celtics, when he had 24 points, 32 rebounds, 13 assists and 12 blocks.[77]

The reason why [quadruple-double] is such a hard thing to accomplish is because it requires a player to be completely dominant on both ends of the court without being too selfish—so he can get the assists—and without fouling out trying to block every shot or grab every rebound. A lot of guys can get the points, rebounds and assists, but it's the defensive stuff that messes everybody up. You have to love defense to get a quadruple-double. There's no way around it.
 
— Nate Thurmond, [78]

The four players listed below are the only players who have officially recorded a quadruple-double in an NBA game. Except for Thurmond, who retired before the award was established in 1983, all of them have won NBA Defensive Player of the Year at least once.[78]

* Inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame
Name Date Team Score Opponent Minutes
played
Points Rebounds Assists Steals Blocks Overtime Reference
Thurmond, NateNate Thurmond* October 18, 1974 Chicago Bulls 120–115 Atlanta Hawks 45 22 14 13 0 or 1 12 Yes (OT) [79]
Robertson, AlvinAlvin Robertson February 18, 1986 San Antonio Spurs 120–114 Phoenix Suns 36 20 11 10 10 0 No [80]
Olajuwon, HakeemHakeem Olajuwon* March 29, 1990 Houston Rockets 120–94 Milwaukee Bucks 40 18 16 10 1 11 No [81]
Robinson, DavidDavid Robinson* February 17, 1994 San Antonio Spurs 115–96 Detroit Pistons 43 34 10 10 2 10 No [82]

Several others missed that mark by finishing with triple-doubles and a total of 9 in a fourth statistical category (statistical categories in which they fell short are in bold):

Name Date Team Opponent Minutes
played
Points Rebounds Assists Steals Blocks Overtime Reference
Barry, RickRick Barry* October 29, 1974 Golden State Warriors Buffalo Braves 43 30 10 11 9 No [83][84]
Steele, LarryLarry Steele November 16, 1974 Portland Trail Blazers Los Angeles Lakers 44 12 11 9 10 No [85][86]
Moore, JohnnyJohnny Moore January 8, 1985 San Antonio Spurs Golden State Warriors 36 26 11 13 9 No [87]
Bird, LarryLarry Bird*[a] February 18, 1985 Boston Celtics Utah Jazz 33 30 12 10 9 No [88][89]
Richardson, Micheal RayMicheal Ray Richardson October 30, 1985 New Jersey Nets Indiana Pacers 54 38 11 11 9 Yes (3 OT) [90]
Drexler, ClydeClyde Drexler* January 10, 1986 Portland Trail Blazers Milwaukee Bucks 42 26 9 11 10 No [86]
Olajuwon, HakeemHakeem Olajuwon*[b] March 3, 1990 Houston Rockets Golden State Warriors 40 29 18 9[b] 11 No [91]
Drexler, ClydeClyde Drexler* November 1, 1996 Houston Rockets Sacramento Kings 42 25 10 9 10 No [92]
Notes
  • a Bird sat out the entire fourth quarter. After playing the third quarter, head coach K. C. Jones informed Bird that he was one steal away from a quadruple-double and asked if he wanted to stay in the game. Bird declined, saying that he "already did enough damage."[93][94]
  • b Olajuwon was credited with 9 assists in the original box score. However, after Rockets officials reviewed the game tape and discovered what they believe was an uncredited assist in the first quarter, they revised the box score, crediting Olajuwon with 10 assists and the third quadruple-double in NBA history. NBA's director of operations, Rod Thorn, requested to review the tape. After reviewing the tape, the league disallowed Olajuwon's quadruple-double and announced that his original line—with 9 assists—is official.[95][96]

Other men's basketball[edit]

League Name Date Team Opponent Minutes
played
Points Rebounds Assists Steals Blocks Overtime Reference
French National League Lewis, DerrickDerrick Lewis[c] February 24, 1990 Reims Lorient 20 11 12 10 No [97]
National Basketball League (Australasia) Rowe, DarenDaren Rowe[d] 1990 Geelong Supercats North Melbourne Giants 25 17 11 11 No [98]
Chinese Basketball Association Hu Xuefeng December 8, 2004 Jiangsu Dragons Yunnan Bulls 16 10 12 10 No [99]
FIBA Europe Under-16 Championship Rubio, RickyRicky Rubio August 19, 2006 Spain Croatia 33 19 10 13 11 No [100]
American Basketball Association (2000–) Staten, JamelJamel Staten February 2, 2007 Minnesota Ripknees St. Louis Stunners 29 13 10 10 No [101]
NCAA Division I men Hudson, LesterLester Hudson[e] November 13, 2007 Tennessee-Martin Central Baptist 31 25 12 10 10 1 No [74][102]
Continental Basketball Association Blackburn, JermaineJermaine Blackburn December 20, 2008 East Kentucky Miners West Virginia Wild 22 10 14 10 No [103]
High school boys Benimon, JerrelleJerrelle Benimon February 17, 2009 Fauquier HS Osbourn HS 13 17 11 10 No [104]
Chinese Basketball Association Williams, ChrisChris Williams December 25, 2009 Qingdao Doublestar Dongguan Leopards 39 15 11 11 11 No [105]
Notes
  • c This is the only quadruple-double in French National League history.[97]
  • d This is the only quadruple-double in National Basketball League history.[98]
  • e This is the only quadruple-double in NCAA Division I men's basketball history.[74] The opponent, Central Baptist, plays in the NAIA.

Women's basketball[edit]

  • Accurate as of September 2011
League Name Date Team Opponent Points Rebounds Assists Steals Blocks Reference
American Basketball League Black, DebbieDebbie Black December 8, 1996 Colorado Xplosion Atlanta Glory 10 14 12 10 [106][107]
Israeli Basketball Super League Brown, EdwinaEdwina Brown December 2008 Ramat Hen Hapoel Holon 22 10 10 10 [108]
Greek Women's Basketball League Dimitrakou, ZoiZoi Dimitrakou March 22, 2009 G.S. Megas Alexandros Aris Holargou 49 18 10 12 [109]
Russian Premiere League Kalmykova, MariaMaria Kalmykova January 21, 2001 Chevakata Vologda Dynamo Kursk 20 15 11 11 [110]
European U16 Championship Verameyenka, AnastasiyaAnastasiya Verameyenka April 20, 2003 Belarus U16 NT Czech U16 NT 21 10 10 12 [111]
AIAW Division I women Meyers, AnnAnn Meyers February 18, 1978 UCLA Stephen F. Austin 20 14 10 10 [73]
NCAA Division III women Esteves, EvitaEvita Esteves February 5, 2004 Emmanuel College Johnson & Wales 10 10 11 13 [112][113]
NCAA Division III women Purnell, DannaDanna Purnell February 10, 2007 SUNY-Old Westbury New Rochelle 14 10 11 13 [112][114]
NCAA Division III women Williams, LatiquaLatiqua Williams November 16, 2008 Bard College New Rochelle 21 13 10 11 [115]

Other known quadruple-doubles[edit]

  • Accurate as of March 2013
League Name Date Team Reference
NCAA Division I women Tate, SonjaSonja Tate January 27, 1993 Arkansas State [112][116]
NCAA Division III women Venet, SuzySuzy Venet 1997 Mount Union [112]
NCAA Division III women Santiago, KatherineKatherine Santiago 1999 Lehman [112]
NCAA Division III women Poppleton, AmandaAmanda Poppleton 2003 Notre Dame (Md.) [112]
High school girls Faris, KellyKelly Faris November 24, 2007 Heritage Christian [117]
High school girls Griner, BrittneyBrittney Griner December 2, 2008 Nimitz HS [118]

During the 2003–04 season, Helena Sverrisdóttir averaged a quadruple-double for Haukar in the Icelandic Women's Division II. In 16 games she averaged 37.6 points, 13.3 rebounds, 11.6 assists and 10.2 steals.[119]

Quintuple-double[edit]

A quintuple-double is defined as a performance in which a player accumulates a double-digit number total in all five statistical categories—points, rebounds, assists, steals, and blocked shots—in a single game.[120] There are only two known quintuple-doubles, both at the girls' high-school level. The first was recorded by Tamika Catchings of Duncanville High School (Duncanville, Texas) with 25 points, 18 rebounds, 11 assists, 10 steals and 10 blocks in 1997.[121] The second was by Aimee Oertner of Northern Lehigh High School (Slatington, Pennsylvania), who had 26 points, 20 rebounds, 10 assists, 10 steals, and 11 blocks on January 7, 2012.[122]

Five-by-five[edit]

A five-by-five is defined as a performance in which a player accumulates a total of five in five statistical categories—points, rebounds, assists, steals, and blocks—in a single game.[123] Statistics for steals and blocks were not kept in the NBA until the 1973–74 season, so NBA five-by-fives were only possible from that season onward. Hakeem Olajuwon (six times) and Andrei Kirilenko (three times) are the only players to have recorded multiple five-by-fives (based on records since the 1985–86 season).[123] Both are also the only players to record five-by-sixes (at least six in all five statistical categories).[123]

NBA[edit]

The following is a list of known five-by-fives. Note the list contains all five-by-fives since the 1985–86 season as well as one before. There may be other five-by-fives in the NBA that occurred before the 1985–86 season.

Name Date Age Team Score Opponent Points Rebounds Assists Steals Blocks Overtime Reference
Erving, JuliusJulius Erving December 5, 1979 29 years, 286 days Philadelphia 76ers 132–120 San Antonio Spurs 28 7 10 5 5 No [124][125][126]
Olajuwon, HakeemHakeem Olajuwon March 10, 1987 24 years, 48 days Houston Rockets 127–136 Seattle SuperSonics 38 17 6 7 12 Yes (2OT) [127]
Olajuwon, HakeemHakeem Olajuwon March 3, 1990 27 years, 41 days Houston Rockets 129–109 Golden State Warriors 29 18 9 5 11 No [91]
Olajuwon, HakeemHakeem Olajuwon April 11, 1992 29 years, 81 days Houston Rockets 92–99 Dallas Mavericks 19 13 6 5 5 No [128]
Robinson, DavidDavid Robinson November 10, 1992 27 years, 96 days San Antonio Spurs 104–98 Milwaukee Bucks 29 9 5 5 10 No [129]
Coleman, DerrickDerrick Coleman January 15, 1993 25 years, 208 days New Jersey Nets 110–105 Philadelphia 76ers 21 10 7 5 5 Yes (OT) [130]
Olajuwon, HakeemHakeem Olajuwon April 22, 1993 30 years, 91 days Houston Rockets 112–110 Minnesota Timberwolves 33 13 5 5 5 Yes (OT) [131]
Olajuwon, HakeemHakeem Olajuwon November 5, 1993 30 years, 288 days Houston Rockets 110–88 New Jersey Nets 24 19 6 5 5 No [132]
Olajuwon, HakeemHakeem Olajuwon December 30, 1993 30 years, 343 days Houston Rockets 110–104 Minnesota Timberwolves 34 10 5 5 8 No [133]
Divac, VladeVlade Divac February 22, 1995 27 years, 19 days Los Angeles Lakers 112–100 Philadelphia 76ers 19 12 8 5 5 No [134]
Tinsley, JamaalJamaal Tinsley November 16, 2001 23 years, 261 days Indiana Pacers 113–120 Minnesota Timberwolves 12 9 15 6 5 Yes (2OT) [135]
Kirilenko, AndreiAndrei Kirilenko December 3, 2003 22 years, 288 days Utah Jazz 101–107 Houston Rockets 19 5 7 8 5 Yes (OT) [136]
Kirilenko, AndreiAndrei Kirilenko December 10, 2003 22 years, 295 days Utah Jazz 95–73 New York Knicks 10 12 6 6 5 No [137]
Camby, MarcusMarcus Camby January 9, 2004 29 years, 293 days Denver Nuggets 106–96 Utah Jazz 8 11 5 5 8 No [138]
Kirilenko, AndreiAndrei Kirilenko January 3, 2006 24 years, 319 days Utah Jazz 90–80 Los Angeles Lakers 14 8 9 6 7 No [139]
Batum, NicolasNicolas Batum December 16, 2012 24 years, 2 days Portland Trail Blazers 95–94 New Orleans Hornets 11 5 10 5 5 No [140]

Facts[edit]

All facts based on data since 1985–86:

  • Greatest five-by-fives (most of each stat): Hakeem Olajuwon, on March 10, 1987, became the first in NBA history to record a five-by-six (at least 6 each of all five statistics: points, rebounds, assists, blocks, steals).[141] It took nearly twenty years for the second official occurrence in NBA history. Andrei Kirilenko, on January 3, 2006, recorded a five-by-six against the Lakers. Though his numbers were not quite as impressive as Olajuwon's, Andrei Kirilenko performed the feat in regulation. No one in the NBA has ever recorded a five-by-seven or higher. But Olajuwon was just 1 assist away in the game just mentioned, whereas Andrei Kirilenko was only 1 steal shy in his five-by-six.
  • Most five-by-fives in a career: Hakeem Olajuwon leads all players with 6 career five-by-fives.[123] Andrei Kirilenko, with 3, is the only other player with more than one career five-by-five.
  • Most five-by-fives in the same season: The record for most five-by-fives in a season is 2. Olajuwon was the first to do this, in the 1993–94 season. Kirilenko was the second to do so in the 2003–04 season.
  • Most five-by-fives in the same year: Olajuwon recorded 3 five-by-fives in a one-year span. Beside the two from the 1993–94 season, he had another late in the 1992–93 season.
  • Quickest pair of five-by-fives: Kirilenko performed a five-by-five on December 3, 2003, and completed another just a week later, on December 10, 2003. The second quickest five-by-fives were completed by Olajuwon on November 5, 1993 and another, 55 days later, on December 30, 1993.
  • Youngest player: Kirilenko's first NBA five-by-five came on December 3, 2003, making him the youngest to record a five-by-five at age 22 years, 288 days.
  • Oldest player: Olajuwon is the oldest player to record a five-by-five. His last career five-by-five came on December 30, 1993, at which time he was 30 years, 343 days old.

Players with at least 5 steals and 5 blocked shots in a game[edit]

This is a list of players since the 1985–86 NBA season who have posted totals of five or more in both steals and blocked shots, but did not record a five-by-five.

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