NBA: Westbrook seals triple-double average as Thunder top Pistons

Reuters

Posted at Apr 06 2019 12:46 PM | Updated as of Apr 06 2019 12:51 PM

Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook (0) shoots against Detroit Pistons guard Langston Galloway (9) and center Andre Drummond (0) during the second half of their match at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Oklahoma City won 123-110. Alonzo Adams, USA TODAY Sports via Reuters

Paul George scored 30 points and Russell Westbrook sealed his third consecutive season averaging a triple-double as the host Oklahoma City Thunder posted a 123-110 win over the Detroit Pistons on Friday.

The game was critical to both teams' playoff positioning, and it was the Thunder who came out ahead, winning for the second consecutive game and the fourth time in seven games.

The Thunder (46-33) remain in seventh place in the Western Conference, a half-game ahead of the San Antonio Spurs, who also won Friday.

The Pistons (39-40) lost for the third consecutive game and for the sixth time in their past eight. Detroit fell into a tie for seventh in the Eastern Conference with the Brooklyn Nets, just a game ahead of the ninth-place Miami Heat.

George was 4 of 7 from behind the 3-point arc.

Westbrook finished with 19 points, eight rebounds and 15 assists a game after recording the second-ever 20-20-20 game in league history. Jerami Grant also scored 19 for Oklahoma City.

The Thunder won despite a monster game from Blake Griffin, who had missed the previous three contests due to knee soreness.

Griffin finished with 45 points, making a career-high nine 3-pointers in his home state. He was 9 of 14 from behind the 3-point arc.

Griffin scored 31 of his points in the first half.

It took just four Thunder possessions for Westbrook to pick up three assists and seal his triple-double season average. Westbrook is the only player to accomplish the feat in back-to-back seasons.

Westbrook will also finish as the league's leader in assists for the third consecutive season.

In the second quarter, Westbrook was called for a flagrant foul on Zaza Pachulia after the Detroit center received a pass under the basket.

Westbrook swatted hard and connected with Pachulia's head as the latter went up for a shot. Pachulia remained on the ground for several moments.

It was not the first run-in between the two.

Last season when Pachulia was a member of the Golden State Warriors, Westbrook accused Pachulia of deliberately trying to hurt him after Pachulia fell on top of Westbrook.

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