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In order to help point guard Kevin Porter Jr. record a career-first, the Houston Rockets embarrassed themselves against the Oklahoma City Thunder.
The Rockets may be at the bottom of Western Conference rankings, but they did get a win yesterday — in more ways than one.
The Rockets finished their Nov. 29 game against the Oklahoma City Thunder with a 13-point victory at 102-89, which is a cause for celebration for the 4-16 Houston team.
But one particular Rocket got his own win Monday night when he recorded the first triple-double of his career. How he recorded that triple-double was indicative of the season the Rockets are having, and just how bad the Thunder is to even have let them win this game.
Point guard Kevin Porter Jr. has recorded a triple-double before, but it was for Houston’s G-League affiliate, the Rio Grande Vipers. With a little over a minute left in the fourth quarter of the Rockets-Thunder game, Porter Jr. was on the cusp of his first NBA career triple-double, but he needed one more rebound. His teammates understood that, so they tipped the ball and let it bounce until Porter Jr. could reclaim it.
The game announcers screamed for the Rockets players to, “Get the ball!” before realizing what the Rockets were trying to help Porter Jr. accomplish.
Houston Rockets team up to get Kevin Porter Jr. his first career triple-double
Porter Jr. finished the game with 11 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists. The 21-year-old wasn’t great with his shooting on the night, only making four of 17 field goals and one of eight 3-pointers.
While the triple-double is a bright spot in his young career, Porter Jr. hasn’t been the game-changer Houston was hoping for when they acquired him from the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Before the season began, Kevin Porter Jr. had the highest odds of becoming the NBA’s Most Improved Player, according to WynnBet.
If Porter Jr. can keep up the triple-doubles by getting rebounds and assists, he can lead the Rockets to become a higher-scoring team. But in order for the Rockets to truly thrive, Porter Jr. needs to shoot the way he did against the Milwaukee Bucks back in April.
If Porter Jr. can keep up the stats, perhaps he still has a shot to become the Most Improved Player after all.