Ricky Rubio didn’t even score 10 points, but the Timberwolves point guard came closer than anyone in nearly a decade to a quadruple-double.
Rubio notched 9 points, 12 assists, 10 rebounds and 8 steals in Minnesota’s loss to the Knicks tonight.
That left him one point and two steals from joining the NBA’s exclusive quadruple-double club:
- David Robinson: 34 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists and 10 blocks in 1994
- Hakeem Olajuwon: 18 points, 16 rebounds, 10 assists and 11 blocks in 1990
- Alvin Robertson: 20 points, 11 rebounds, 10 assists and 10 steals in 1986
- Nate Thurmond: 22 points, 14 rebounds, 13 assists and 12 blocks in 1974
The league didn’t begin tracking individual blocks and steals until 1973-74, so some would’ve-been quadruple-doubles might have been lost to history. But with fairly accurate record-keeping now, it’s been quite a while since someone came as close as Rubio.
Here’s every time a player had at least eight in four of the five major categories in the last 30 years:
Rubio, of course, is the only player on the list without 10 points. It’s hard to play so well overall without scoring double digits.
This is just the second time someone had a double-double without 10 points this season. The other: Rubio with 8 points, 12 rebounds and 12 assists against the Magic on Nov. 18. But Rubio has a long way to go to become synonymous with that achievement. Jason Kidd had 27 doubles-doubles without points, and Rajon Rondo is the active leader with seven.
There’s also the question of whether Rubio was actually “close” to a quadruple-double. Scoring a single point is very manageable, but two more steals is a tall order.
Rubio gets two steals every 30 minutes this season. Even his rate tonight – hardly a reliable sample – was two steals every nine minutes. Generously average the rates, and Rubio would’ve needed an extra half or so.
Is needing another half to notch a counting accomplishment “close”?
Either way, Rubio came closer than we’ve seen in quite some time.