April 5, 2024

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What’s A Double-double In Basketball? Explained

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what's double double in basketball

Basketball players set a variety of goals for themselves when they step onto the court. While each player sets their own objectives for each game, there are a few that are on everyone’s mind, one of which is the double-double. So what does a double-double mean in basketball? When a player totals ten or more (typically double digits) in each of the five statistical categories (points, rebounds, assists, steals, and blocked shots), they have achieved a double-double. Please continue reading to learn more.

What’s A Double-double In Basketball?

If a player only works on one skill, he will not succeed in professional competition with the development of basketball tactics. To constantly face your opponents, you must improve and transform yourself.

For seasoned shooters, learning how to dribble and pass the ball becomes increasingly crucial. At the same time, effective counterattackers must be able to consistently score goals. Learn to take the ball going forward if you’re good at stopping the ball.

You’ll take the initiative thanks to your flexibility on the field and lessen your chances of sitting on the sidelines. Players who can contribute on the court are always sought after by coaches.

A double is an attempt to demonstrate your skill in multiple areas. You must receive double digits in two of the five key statistical categories to be eligible for the competition. These consist of points, rebounds, assists, steals, and blocks.


The most common goal among players is to score ten points in each game because it is the easiest achievement to make in the five categories. You have the option of making two-pointers (like dunks) or three-pointers (far-reaching shots). We won’t need to perform as much work if we simply divide.

Professional basketball players frequently score more than ten points in the first or even the second quarter.


Power forward and center positions are frequently capable of grabbing more than ten rebounds per game. They have a strong frame and a great standing posture, spending the majority of their time under the basket. Power forwards typically have fewer opportunities to rebound than centers do.


Being required to handle the ball frequently on the court allows the point guard and small forward to easily reach the highest support levels. Some players may find it challenging to score when the ball is passed around excessively, but professionals don’t seem to mind.


One of the hardest things to do in a game to get ten points is to steal the ball. We were unable to identify any NBA team that averaged more than ten steals per game as a team during the entire 2018–2019 NBA season.


Recording ten blocks are just as challenging as stealing ten times. If we use the 2018-2019 NBA tournament as an example, the Golden State Warriors were the team that averaged the most saves per game.

However, they only managed 6.2 blocks per game on average. Even worse are the individual statistics.

How Common Are Double-doubles?

In the NBA, double-doubles have historically been fairly common, though they are now much more frequent. In college basketball, they’re still fairly common, but not as much in middle school or high school basketball.

As you might expect, steals and blocks are much less frequent than any of the other combinations in double-doubles.

Only 17 players—Draymond Green and Lou Williams—have ever had more than 10 steals in a single game, and only two of those 17 are still active in the league.

Blocks are a little more frequent, with players managing 10+ blocks in one game more than 150 times in recorded history. Still, a combination of points, assists, and rebounds is what produces double-doubles the most frequently.

what's double double in basketball

Breaking those down further, a double-double containing points and rebounds happens far more than any other double-double — which is why many people call it the “conventional double-double.”

Although they make up more than 90% of all double-doubles, these are typically reserved for centers and forwards.

The second most popular are points and assists. The percentage of double-doubles that are these will be much lower because they are typically only given to guards.

In general, double-doubles are widespread. Every NBA game will probably feature at least one, but there’s a good chance that number will be higher.

Which Players Record The Most Double-doubles?

We briefly discussed how most double-doubles include points and rebounds, with the remaining double-doubles typically including points and assists.

Given this, players who are most likely to record a double-double in basketball are forwards and centers, with guards making up a much smaller portion of this group.

Players have consistently earned double-doubles over the years, and there have been many instances of this. Over 2,000 double-doubles were recorded in the NBA during the 2018–19 season, with just 20 players accounting for nearly half of those totals—only three of them guards.

Three different players each recorded 60 or more double-doubles during the 2018–19 campaign, despite only participating in about 80 games. Rudy Gobert, Nikola Vucevic, and Andre Drummond, all centers, finished second, third, and fourth in the league, respectively, with 69, 66, and 60 points, respectively.

If we’re looking at the history of the NBA, here are five of the most consistent double-double getters in the league:

  • Tim Duncan – achieved 841 point-rebound double-doubles in his career
  • Karl Malone – achieved 811 point-rebound double-doubles in his career
  • Hakeem Olajuwon – achieved 774 point-rebound double-doubles in his career
  • Kevin Garnett – achieved 741 point-rebound double-doubles in his career
  • Shaquille O’Neal – achieved 727 point-rebound double-doubles in his career

Each of the aforementioned five players was a double-double machine! They were all centers or power forwards, but they are now all retired.

Longest Double-double Streak

Wilt Chamberlain had 227 consecutive double-doubles from 1964 to 1967. In 1966 and 1967, while playing for the Philadelphia 76ers, Chamberlain won two MVP awards, solidifying his position as one of the league’s most powerful players. The second and third longest streaks, at 220 and 133 respectively, are also held by Chamberlain.

The record for the most recent period (following the ABA/NBA merger in 1976) belongs to Kevin Love, who was compiling impressive stats while playing for the Minnesota Timberwolves. During that time, he made 53 consecutive records.

Youngest Player To Record Double-double

With 10 points and 11 rebounds in 1997, Tracy McGrady, then 18 years old (18 years and 175 days to be exact), set a record for the youngest player to record a double-double. The fact that McGrady was only 18 years old gave fans a glimpse of the young man’s basketball potential even though his statistics weren’t extraordinary.

Oldest Player To Record Double-double

When he recorded 10 points and 15 rebounds in 2009, NBA legend Dikembe Mutombo was 42 years old. It must have been a treat for basketball fans to see Mutombo, a four-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year and future Hall of Famer, perform at his peak on the court with a double-double one last time before quitting at the conclusion of that season.

Read More: Does Basketball Make You Taller?

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