HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS — Wilt Chamberlain‘s record of 227 straight double-doubles is safe for now.
All-Star Kevin Love was 53-games into his chase of Chamberlain’s record when it all came crashing down Sunday in Oakland. Love managed just six points and 12 rebounds in the Timberwolves’ blowout loss to the Warriors, a team he lit up for 37 points and 23 rebounds the last time he saw them (late last month).
To their credit, the Warriors (and specifically David Lee) were not about to watch Love abuse them again. And they took whatever precautions necessary to make sure that Love didn’t burn them again. They beat the brakes off of the Timberwolves, and not even a monster night from Love could have saved them.
Love’s streak took on a life of its own the past few months. He passed Moses Malone for the league’s longest streak since the 1976 ABA/NBA merger last week, and that milestone came complete with tributes (here and elsewhere) for a job well done.
But now that it’s over, Love’s priorities will no doubt shift, as he told the Star Tribune after it was all over:
“Now I can just focus on playing my game,” he said. “I was still doing it for myself, but a lot of it was for fans and everybody who wanted to watch me get those double doubles. I feel pretty happy with what I did. I don’t think we should look at it as the streak came to an end.
“It’s time to reflect on what I did and how I continue to prosper in this league.”
Love deserves his props for the accomplishment. Praise is due for Timberwolves coach Kurt Rambis, who did the right thing by taking Love out and not letting him chase the record and pile up hollow numbers in a blowout loss.
We’re curious now to see what kind of streak Love can put together now. Let’s see if he can top his own mark of 53 straight between now and whenever he could make that happen next season.