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There are only a handful of players in the history of the game that have been able to make triple-doubles look like clockwork. One of the newest Lakers did it last season with the Wizards, and the man who previously held the record for most all-time recently came to his defense. 

Russell Westbrook had a fantastic 20-21' season statistically, averaging 22.2 points, 11.5 rebounds, and 11.7 assists per game on a less than stellar Wizards team. It was the 4th time in his career that he averaged double digits in all three categories for a season, and there was definitely an argument to be made for being included in the MVP conversation. 

Even so, Russell came nowhere close to winning the award. In fact, he only received a single 3rd place vote for his troubles. Oscar Robertson, the man who held the record for most triple-doubles before Westbrook broke his record last season, recently voiced his displeasure with the results on The Knuckleheads Podcast

"I look at Westbrook, and he got triple-doubles this year and no one even noticed it, they didn't think it was such a big deal," Robertson said on The Knuckleheads Podcast. "I think that's totally unfair. I think he should have won [MVP] again. If he [averaged] a triple-double again, and he didn't win [MVP], so why keep stats then?" 

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Roberston definitely has a point when he says that people no longer seem to appreciate how effortless Westbrook makes these triple-doubles look. There was a time when a player achieving such numbers in a game was newsworthy, but the reaction has tempered with how common nights like that are now. 

The one point that Robertson misses, however, is that Westbrook's numbers came on a team that was going nowhere. While the numbers were impressive, they did not result in more wins or a deep playoff run for the Wizards in 2021. A team's success plays as much of a factor as anything else when it comes to award consideration. 

A fresh start with the loaded Los Angeles Lakers should allow Westbrook to show that he can put up those same numbers for a contending team. Whether that's enough to garner some MVP consideration, only time will tell. 

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