By Adrian Stewart Co
Russell Westbrook had a historic evening as Washington Wizards prevailed over Indiana Pacers, 154-141, in a high-scoring 2020-2021 NBA Season encounter on Monday (Tuesday in the Philippines) at the Capital One Arena in Washington.
Westbrook became the first player in NBA history to record at least 20 plus assists and 20 plus rebounds in a single game twice with his 24 assists and 21 rebounds to go along with his 14 points.
Westbrook’s 24 assists, which tied his career-high, were also the most assists done by a player in Wizards’ franchise history, while his 21 rebounds was a personal best since entering the NBA in 2008.
Clinging to a slim 45-43 lead, the Wizards turned to Daniel Gafford and Chandler Hutchison to spread the lead to 62-54 before widening it further to 82-66 at the half with hits from Westbrook and Bradley Beal.
Washington went on to establish its largest lead at 105-82 following baskets from Ish Smith and Beal but Indiana made its presence felt since then to threaten to within 127-140 in the fourth period.
However, that was the Pacers’ last stand as the Wizards went for the finishing blow behind Japanese forward Rui Hachimura, Gafford and Westbrook for a 154-139 lead.
Hachimura ended the match with 27 points, while Beal and Gafford submitted 26 and 15 points, respectively, as the Wizards hiked its record to 30-35.
Caris LeVert, meanwhile, tallied 33 points, while Domantas Sabonis added 32 points, 20 rebounds, eight assists, and three steals as the Pacers fell to 30-34 with the loss.
In other results, Stephen Curry connected eight triples for 41 points as the Golden State Warriors (33-32) cruised to a 123-108 domination over the slumping New Orleans Pelicans (29-37).
Atlanta Hawks (36-30) halted Portland Trail Blazers’ (36-29) winning run with a 123-114 beating, while Orlando Magic (21-44) turns back Detroit Pistons (19-46), 119-112.
WASHINGTON 154 – Hachimura 27, Beal 26, Gafford 15, Westbrook 14, Bertans 14, Smith 13, Hutchison 13, Len 12, Lopez 11, Neto 9, Winston 0.
INDIANA 141 – LeVert 33, Sabonis 32, J. Holiday 15, McConnell 15, A. Holiday 15, McDermott 11, Sumner 10, Brissett 10, Martin 0.
Quarterscores: 36-31, 82-66, 122-102, 154-141./ASC, WDJ