Sportress of Blogitude

LeBron James shows Russell Westbrook ‘respect’ following latest triple-double

Russell Westbrook notched his 30th triple double of the season Wednesday as the Washington Wizards upended the Los Angeles Lakers with a 116-107 victory. Watching from the sidelines as he continues to recover from a high-ankle sprain, LeBron James was left quite impressed with Westbrook’s continued heroics.

After the game, James took to Instagram to give Westbrook, who contributed 18 points, 18 rebounds and 14 assists in the win, a well-deserved shout-out.

Westbrook is one of the NBA’s fiercest competitors and has played with a chip on his shoulder his entire career. That edge to his game plays a huge role in how he continues to dominate, despite the naysayers who take issue with his play.

The 2017 NBA MVP, two-time All-NBA First-Team and nine-time All-Star derided critics earlier this week who argue he’s a box-score-stuffer and that the incredible numbers he puts up season after season are nothing more than empty stats.

“I honestly believe there is no player like myself and if people want to take it for granted, sorry for them,” Westbrook said after posting a triple-double in Monday’s loss to the San Antonio Spurs, per ESPN. “I’m pretty sure if everybody could do it, they would do it. I honestly make sure I impact the game in many ways every night; defending, rebounding, passing, whatever it is my team needs from me to win. That’s what I do. I really don’t, honestly, I don’t care what people think about it.”

Monday’s triple-double — 22 points, 14 assists, 13 rebounds — was Westbrook’s 12th in April, which means the superstar now holds the NBA record for most triple-doubles in a calendar month. Oscar Robertson previously held the record with 11 in March, 1968.

What’s more, while Westbrook was poised to break an unflattering triple-double mark earlier this season when the Wizards were struggling, the team has been thriving of late, winning 11 of its last 13 games. Not only has the hot streak put the Wizards in the postseason conversation, the combination of Westbrook’s triple-doubles and the victories have moved the superstar up in the NBA record books on two fronts.

In other words, as James suggested in his Instagram tribute, Westbrook should continue to ignore the haters and critics. The superstar scoring machine’s game speaks for itself … even if Westbrook has to remind people of that from time to time.