5 guys who could end the NBA’s 22-year quadruple-double drought

Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook hasn't approached a quadruple-double since 2010, but that doesn't mean he still couldn't.

Jennifer Stewart-USA TODAY Sports

The quadruple-double has long been considered one of the NBA’s most magical statistical achievements, and it’s no wonder why: Only four players have QD’d, and three of them are in the Hall of Fame.

Michael Jordan didn’t do it, Kobe Bryant hasn’t done it and darn sure won’t now that he’s on his rocking chair tour, and LeBron James might just have to settle for being the league’s active leader in triple-doubles.

The other fun part of this statistical unicorn is that two of the NBA’s five quad-dubs (Hakeem Olajuwon had two)  are celebrating anniversaries this week: San Antonio’s David Robinson (34 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists, 10 blocks) was the last to pull it off 22 years ago Wednesday, and his Spurs forerunner Alvin Robertson (the only non-HOF quadruple-doubler) got his 30 years ago today with 20 points, 11 rebounds, 10 assists and 10 steals.

As James knows better than anyone still playing, the key to the quad is adding 10 steals or blocks to the standard triple, and that’s darn near impossible. And even if 10 blocks are your thing – as they are for Heat center Hassan Whiteside, who has done it three times this season — getting 10 assists (two is his career-high) is a massive roadblock for a big man.

But all that doesn’t mean a few players don’t have at least a puncher’s chance at joining this exclusive club, starting with the guy who made the last best run at it.

1. Timberwolves guard Ricky Rubio

Back in December, Rubio came closer than anyone since Andrei Kirilenko in 2006 to reaching the statistical holy grail. He had nine points, 12 assists, 10 rebounds and eight steals in a Timberwolves loss to the Knicks. More important, Rubio is in the top five in the NBA in assists and steals and is more than capable of hitting 10 rebounds even though he’s a point guard. When he can do that, there’s at least a chance of adding on the fourth layer – Rubio has had 22 games with five or more steals in his five-year career and has reached eight one other time.

2. Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook

Westbrook’s best run at the quad came in 2010, when he missed by three rebounds and two steals during his second year in the league, but he’s still a frequent triple-doubler at age 27 and will be a threat as long as he leads the league in steals, as he does this season.

4. Hornets power forward Anthony Davis

Davis is perhaps the NBA’s only big man who can get this done in both blocks and assists, and he’s less than a year removed from his best effort, when he rocked the Nuggets for 36 points, 14 rebounds, seven assists and nine blocks. Davis handles the ball enough for a big man that he’s at least a threat despite his 1.9 assists per game, and the fact he ranks third in the league in blocks with 2.2 per night means that stat is not out of reach for him, either.