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Ricky Rubio comes closer than anyone in nearly a decade to quadruple-double

Timberwolves Knicks Basketball

Minnesota Timberwolves guard Ricky Rubio (9) passes off the ball against New York Knicks guard Langston Galloway (2) and forward Kyle O’Quinn (9) during the first quarter of an NBA basketball game, Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2015, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)


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:

Ricky RubioMINNYK12/16/20159101280
Andrei KirilenkoUTAMIN3/8/20061511828
Ron ArtestINDMIA3/31/2002249982
Chris WebberSACVAN2/7/19992515839
Mookie BlaylockATLPHI4/14/199814811100
Clyde DrexlerHOUSAC11/1/199625109100
David RobinsonSASDET2/17/1994341010210
David RobinsonSASMIN1/11/199427121008
Clyde DrexlerPORIND12/11/1992178980
Alvin RobertsonMILMIA11/6/19902712881
Hakeem OlajuwonHOUMIL3/29/1990181610111
Hakeem OlajuwonHOUGSW3/3/199029189511
Michael JordanCHIBOS1/15/19894291180
Alvin RobertsonSASDET3/25/198815101281
Fat LeverDENNJN11/24/198721131480
Alvin RobertsonSASPHO2/18/1986201110100
Clyde DrexlerPORMIL1/10/198626911101

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.