Doubling Up

Best Friends Forever

While I was watching Blake Griffin’s annhilation of the Pacers on Monday, the Clippers broadcast team mentioned that Griffin had posted a double-double in every game since the Clippers’ first meeting with the Pacers’ on November 18th. That’s a span of 27 games. Checking it out on Basketball-Reference I found that he’s not the only one on a similar streak. While Griffin has had 27 consecutive double-doubles, that’s not even the longest active steak in the NBA. Kevin Love is working on a streak of 28 straight double-doubles.

I read quite a bit of basketball coverage and analysis on a daily basis and the fact that I haven’t heard mention of this remarkable fact by national outlets makes me wonder if I’m missing something.

Let me throw out a few other numbers to put these streaks in context. Shaq’s career high double-double streak was 18 games. Going back to 1987, the previous highest streaks by two players in the same season was a pair of 19 game double-double runs by Emeka Okafor and Kevin Garnett in the 2004-2005 season. Going back to 1987 there have been only three other double-double streaks of more than 25 games. The three players who produced those streaks: Hakeem Olajuwon, Charles Barkley and Kevin Garnett.

Garnett has the longest single-season streak since 1987 at 32 games which took place during the 2006 season. That streak was actually 37 games as it covered the last 32 games of the 2005-2006 season and the first 5 games of the 2006-2007 season. There may be longer streaks in the history of the NBA but Basketball-Reference’s game logs only go back to the 1987 season, limiting my search.

At the rate Love and Griffin are going it’s difficult to imagine a scenario where one if not both doesn’t shatter Garnett’s record. Over his 28 game streak Love has averaged 16.7 Rebounds per game, with just 2 games of 10 rebounds. During his streak Griffin has been averaging 13.9 Rebounds per game with just 1 game of 10 rebounds. Ironically, Griffin’s single 10 rebound game came against Kevin Love and the Timberwolves.

I say this in the nicest way possible, but the situation is vaguely reminiscent of the summer of 1998 when Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa pushed each other to greatness (albeit with the help of illicit substances) and both shattered an unbreakable record. If Griffin and Love keep it up, we won’t have to wait long to see them pass Garnett. Love could pass Garnett’s single season record on Saturday, January 29th, against Toronto. He would have to wait until February 8th, against Houston to pass Garnett’s extended streak. Griffin could hit 33 games on January 29th as well, against Charlotte. In an interesting bit of symmetry Griffin could also hit 38 on the same night as Kevin Love, February 8th against Orlando.

Oh, and in case I didn’t mention. . . they are playing each other for the third time right now. Thank you League Pass!

Update:

Well I’m either an idiot or put a curse on Blake Griffin (possibly both). I posted this piece just as the Timberwolves/Clippers game was starting and of course Griffin finished with 29 points and 8 rebounds, ending his streak. I was also a little nervous my big mouth had ruined it for everyone as Kevin Love didn’t have a single rebound in the 1st half, grabbing all 12 of his boards after halftime.

Even though his streak is over and this post is now largely irrelevant, what Griffin accomplished was still extremely impressive. Griffin’s streak of 27 straight double-doubles is the 4th longest streak since 1987. He and Love will still own the record for longest double-double streaks by two players in the same season.

Also ESPN mentioned their streaks in the game recap. Truehoop also mentioned i on their frontpage this morning. Maybe this has been talked about alot and I’ve just missed it.

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1 Comment

Filed under Los Angeles Clippers, Minnesota Timberwolves, NBA, Statistical Analysis

One response to “Doubling Up

  1. Pingback: The Outside World – 1/21/11 | Pickin' Splinters

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